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Tampa police: Missing teen found dead 2 miles from home; foul play not suspected

Posted: 11:21 PM, Apr 02, 2017
Updated: 2017-04-07 12:58:16-04
Reward offered for safe return of missing teen

Tampa Police say the body of Hailey Acierno was found 2 miles south of her home on Friday in Flatwoods Park. During a news conference on Friday, Chief Ward said "We have found Hailey. It is not the outcome we have hoped for."

Foul play is not suspected, however police continue to investigate. 

Chief Ward says initial information leads them to believe that Hailey took her own life. 

Hailey was reported missing on Tuesday, March 28. 

Tampa teen missing for one week, dozens gather for candlelight vigil

A major cash reward was on the table for her safe return.

RELATED: TPD looking for missing 17-year-old girl

During the search, ABC Action News spoke to Hailey's mother, "I don't know where she is... and it's hard," said Lisa Acierno.

Lisa Acierno fought back tears as another day passed with no sign of her 17-year-old daughter Hailey.  The teen was last seen walking in her New Tampa neighborhood Tuesday afternoon.

"Everything that's been a possible lead has turned up nothing at all," said Acierno.

A "Find Hailey Acierno" Facebook page has thousands of followers.  And the last several days, hundreds of volunteers have been out looking for Hailey and posting flyers.  They've focused the search on Flatwoods Park, a place Hailey liked to hang out.  But they believe that search is now nearly exhausted, so searchers took a break Sunday to regroup.

"It just horrifies me to think about what kind of shape she is in right now," Acierno said.

That's because Hailey has mental health issues treated with medications she's been without for five days.  But the family's thankful for massive support from the community, even total strangers, and are hoping for a good outcome.

"The prayers have been huge. I believe God can help us, and I hope he does," said Acierno.

Lisa's boss, Steve Yerrid of the Yerrid Law Firm is now posting a $25,000 reward for Hailey's safe return.

"If there is that one person who may not have wanted to do something, maybe that will help," Acierno said.

And the family is sending a desperate plea to their daughter and anyone else who may know where she is.

"You've got to come home, Hailey. You can't do this to us. Your brothers, your dad, me...We're dying inside," said Acierno.