Runaway bride in hiding, wedding postponed

May 1, 2005 at 7:56 AM
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ATLANTA, May 1 (UPI) -- Instead of being at her wedding reception, runaway bride Jennifer Wilbanks returned to Duluth, Ga., Saturday evening and was taken to an undisclosed location.

Wilbanks, missing since Tuesday, called her family early Saturday and said she had been kidnapped while jogging.

But under subsequent questioning by police, she admitted she had run away because her Saturday wedding, which included 600 invited guests and 28 attendants, had become too overwhelming, CNN reported.

Shortly after her family put up an $100,000 reward for information leading to her return, Wilbanks called her fiance John Mason from outside a convenience store Albuquerque, saying she had been abducted by a man and woman who cut hair and shoved her into a van. She said they finally released her 1,420 miles from her home.

The 32-year-old woman was escorted by her stepfather and uncle from New Mexico to Atlanta Saturday night.

Before the aircraft landed, a flight attendant handed out a written statement from the Wilbanks family to the news media: "She has spoken to her fiance. He cannot wait to see her. She says the wedding is not called off, just postponed."

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