On March 5, 16-year-old Amy Yu and 45-year-old Kevin Esterly ran away together.
As Dearly previously reported, that same day they disappeared, Yu and Esterly were spotted boarding a plane to Dallas, Texas. However, for nearly two weeks later, the pair was not heard from until March 17.CBS This Morning
According to NBC News, Yu and Esterly were found Saturday morning hiding out in Mexico. The two of them were spotted after Mexico’s Attorney General released an Amber Alert for the teenager when it was discovered that Yu and Esterly had purchased one-way tickets to the country.
As police told the media, Yu was “unharmed and appeared to be in good health.” Since the discovery, Yu has already been reunited with her mom and brother, while Esterly remains in Miami, awaiting extradition back to Pennsylvania.
The estranged husband and father of four has also attempted to make contact with his wife, Stacey, following his arrest. According to Stacey’s attorney, she is not accepting those phone calls right now.
John Waldron explained to The Morning Call:
“I’m assuming he’s trying to get a hold of her for some type of legal representation in the process of being extradited. With what she has been put through, she is not accepting his calls.”
In one of her first statements to the media, Stacey told The Morning Call that she and Esterly had been getting in fights since the summer over his relationship with Yu.WFMZ-TV
He kept telling his wife that he wanted to be like a father figure to Yu, but Stacey didn’t believe him:
“Kevin indicated that he was attempting to be her dad, a father figure to Amy. Stacey did not believe it to be merely a father-daughter relationship and that’s why there were fights. They were fighting every day over Amy.”
She continued through her lawyer:
“Thing is, there were fights all the time because Kevin didn’t have time for Stacey or his own children. It was a constant struggle that Stacey was living with and Amy’s mom was living with, and that’s why this harassment episode came up because they were trying to deal with this. He couldn’t help himself, he couldn’t stop.”
As Waldron told The Morning Call, the whole situation has been extremely overwhelming for Stacey and their four children, one of whom was Yu’s best friend.
He went on to say that Stacey is just happy Yu is back with her mother:
“This incident has disrupted her family with her girls and disrupted her financially with the fact that Kevin took $4,000 out of her account and took off with that in traveling with Amy. So she’s left working full time with her young girls and she’s super overwhelmed with this situation.
She’s very happy and relieved. She wants Amy home with her mom, that is what she has always wanted. She is glad that Amy is safe and that Kevin is with authorities.”
Esterly and his family have known Yu and her family since she was just seven years old after meeting at church. Yu’s father still lives in China, while the teen, her mother, and her brother live in Allentown.
— Manuel Gamiz (@MannyPantalones) March 18, 2018
Prior to buying a one way ticket to Mexico, Esterly had signed Yu out of school a total of 10 times without her mother’s permission since November 2017. As Dearly previously reported, Yu had changed her emergency contact sheet to read that Esterly was her stepfather.
Yu’s mom wasn’t alerted to the issue until February 9, 2018, when she went to pick her daughter up from school and she was gone. It was also reported that the worried mother found “inappropriate” text messages on her daughter’s phone from Esterly that led her to believe there was some sort of secret relationship going on between the two of them.
Esterly became angry with Yu’s mother when he learned she got the police involved.
It was also revealed by The Morning Call that Esterly was so obsessed over his relationship with Yu that he lost his job as a concrete contractor and was evicted from the small apartment he was renting because of “police presence.”
When Esterly will be brought back to Pennsylvania is still unknown; however, once he is back in the state, he will be arraigned on a felony charge of interference of the custody of a child.
Yu’s mother told the media that she was so excited to hear her daughter was safe that she cried.