Last week, two missing teenage sisters from Lakeville, Minnesota were found safe and healthy at a horse ranch by police and U.S. marshals, who were prosecuting a search warrant at the ranch.
Samantha Rucki, 17, and her younger sister Gianna Rucki, 16, were found living on the White Horse Ranch in an area in west Minnesota by authorities, who were searching for information and evidence about the girls’ disappearance two years ago.
U.S. marshals and police arrived at the White Horse Ranch with a search warrant, hoping to find out information about the girls disappearance and their possible whereabouts. However, to their surprise, they ended up finding the two girls at the ranch.
The sisters had been missing since April 2013, when they decided to run away to escape a nasty custody battle between their mother and father.
The girls were taken back to their home in Lakeville, Minnesota by police to undergo medical examinations and be reunited with their family.
Last April, law enforcement authorities renewed their search for the girls after a news story in the Star Tribune revealed new information about their missing persons case.
The girls’ mother, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki, was accused by police of helping the girls run away from their father during their custody fight. Sandra was arrested in Florida in October, but her arrest and questioning did not help police find the sisters.
Police also believed that an underground group of family court critics were helping to hide the girls.
Investigators found out about the White Horse Ranch after finding evidence during a search at a residence in St. Cloud, Minnesota. The owner of the residence is, Dede Evavold, a member of the “Protective Parent” movement, a group that is critical of the family courts.
The White Horse Ranch is owned by Doug and Gina Dahlen. The White Horse Ranch website describes the ranch as a nonprofit organization where abused children work with rescue horses.
During the custody battle, the girls had accused their father, David Rucki, of abusing them. However, a psychologist determined that the mother, Sandra Rucki, had brainwashed the girls into making up statements against the father.
In November 2013, after the girls had run away, a family court judge granted David Rucki full custody of the two girls, noting that there was no real evidence of child abuse.
Last summer, police got an arrest warrant for the girls’ mother, Sandra Grazzini-Rucki. She was arrested on October 18th in Florida. She was extradited from Florida to Minnesota at the beginning of November.
Grazzini-Rucki faces three felony counts for deprivation of parental rights over her alleged role in the girls’ disappearance and she is currently being held on a $1 million bail bond.
Grazzini-Rucki denies any involvement with the girls’ disappearance.