Aug 18, 2015 11:53 PM

Rosie O'Donnell's missing daughter found

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) Hours after it was publicly revealed that Rosie O'Donnell's 17-year-old daughter had been missing for a week, she was found by police safe in a New Jersey home on Tuesday.

Chelsea O'Donnell had left the family's home a week earlier with a therapy dog, and her mother's concern was intensified because she had not been taking needed medication. Chelsea suffers from mental illness, according to her mother's spokeswoman, Cindi Berger.

Rosie O'Donnell lives in South Nyack, New York, about 25 miles north of New York City, and police there had been involved in searching for her daughter since Sunday. They informed authorities in Barnegat, New Jersey, on Tuesday that they believed Chelsea was there, said Lt. Keith Germain, spokesman for Barnegat police.

Police went to the residence and although the person answering the door initially did not want to reveal Chelsea's presence, police said they would not be leaving until she came out. She then appeared and left with police without incident, Germain said.

It was not immediately clear what relationship O'Donnell had with the people who lived in the house. Rosie O'Donnell has a vacation home in the New Jersey shore area.

Although Chelsea left her suburban New York home on Aug. 11, it wasn't until Tuesday that her mother publicly revealed she was missing through a statement and tweets. She appealed to the public for help and initially thought her daughter might be in New York City.

"Chelsea, like millions of people, lives with mental illness. It has been a difficult road for Chelsea and her family and they just want her back safe." Berger said before Chelsea was found.

It has been a rough stretch for the 53-year-old comedian, who received unwanted public attention two weeks ago when Donald Trump mentioned her name when asked in a Republican presidential debate about harsh comments he had made about women.

O'Donnell had a major heart attack in 2012, and discussed her near-death experience in an HBO special earlier this year. She rejoined the daytime talk show "The View" last year, but left again before six months were up, saying the routine was proving too stressful for her heart condition.


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