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O.C. Mother Missing Since Sunday Found 'in a Daze'

Buena Park woman is spotted wandering in a department store and hospitalized for examination of a bump on her head.

January 30, 2003|Dan Weikel and David Haldane | Times Staff Writers

A Buena Park woman who had been missing for four days was found late Wednesday wandering inside a Target store in Anaheim, authorities said.

Ruxandra Brasov, 25, who had failed to return home after retrieving her disabled car, was spotted by a customer who recognized her from media reports at the store in the 8100 block of West Lincoln, a few miles from where her car had been found, Buena Park Sgt. Richard Pena said.

"She was sort of in a daze," Pena said. The customer took her to the Buena Park Police Department, arriving just before 10 p.m.

"We do not know if a crime was committed," he said. "At this point, we have absolutely no idea what happened; we're just very happy that she was found."

Brasov was taken to a local hospital for a routine examination after officers noticed a bump on her head. The investigation into her disappearance will continue, Pena said.

Brasov had last been seen about 7:30 p.m. Sunday at a small Anaheim shopping center. Her car was found 28 hours later abandoned in Fullerton.

Her roommate had dropped her off near a gas station and shopping center at La Palma Avenue and Euclid Street. Brasov had left her 1993 Ford Tempo sedan there a few days earlier when it overheated.

As Brasov drove the car off, the roommate followed for a few blocks then decided to take the nearby Riverside Freeway to their Buena Park apartment. The roommate told police that Brasov continued on surface streets.

The four-door car was found about 10:30 p.m. Monday near Brookhurst Road and Orangethorpe Avenue in Fullerton. The front passenger-side window was open and bags of groceries were on the back seat, police said.

Before getting the news that she had been found, Brasov's husband, Ignacio Sandoval, 27, said he had "no clue where she might be. "We have checked every possible place where she could have gone. I have called police departments. I have called hospitals."

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