According to Major Lee Sherrod of Port Wentworth Police, Georgia, officers received a phone call at 7:00am yesterday that 2-year-old Kamiyah Vicks was missing.
He added that she was last seen with her mum at 5:00pm the previous day walking near the woods.
The mother was also believed to be missing at one point.
Over 18 hours, mum and daughter became separated, but it is unclear exactly how that came about at this stage.
At around 12:30pm yesterday the toddler was found with minor injuries in a wooded area nearby in the same clothes she had on when she vanished.
The final part of the search was caught on police body cam footage showing officers running towards the sound of a child crying.
Police Chief Matt Libby told WSAV: "You know you work these type of cases and, of course, you're going to have fear.
“And we all had the fear and we knew it had been 18 hours and she was small and by herself and that area has a lot of wildlife that could hurt you, snakes, gators, other stuff."
Chief Libby said Kamiyah was dehydrated and had scrapes and bruises consistent with being in the woods for many hours.
She was taken to hospital for further evaluation.
Port Wentworth Police, Georgia DNR, Georgia State Patrol, Marine Rescue, Chatham Police, Savannah Police and trained rescue recovery volunteers from Chatham Emergency Management all combined forces to locate the child.
Major Sherrod said investigators are planning to speak with the mother.
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