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Tennessee Woman Missing on Cross-Country Road Trip, Police Suspect Danger

Authorities are growing increasingly concerned about the whereabouts and safety of a Tennessee woman who embarked on a cross-country road trip with her boyfriend but hasn’t been seen for over three weeks.

Nikki Alcaraz, also known as Nikki Cunningham, was last seen on May 6 in Moriarty, New Mexico, according to a missing persons flier shared by the Cheatham County Sheriff’s Office.

The 33-year-old Alcaraz was traveling with her boyfriend, Steven Tyler Stratton, as confirmed by family members. Alcaraz, a mother of two, was last spotted in a Jeep Wrangler bearing Tennessee license plates and a “Mama Tired” bumper sticker, as described in the flier.

Due to a history of domestic assault, law enforcement believes she may be in danger and could potentially be in New Mexico, Arizona, or California. Alcaraz’s family revealed that she and Stratton were on a road trip from Tennessee to Orange County, California, where she intended to visit relatives.

According to reports from KABC and WKRN, the couple had an encounter with law enforcement in Torrance County, New Mexico, on May 4. Alcaraz allegedly had a black eye, and a witness claimed to have seen Stratton physically assaulting her. Stratton was also injured, with blood coming from his mouth and nose. However, both individuals declined to press charges, as mentioned in the sheriff’s report.

Alcaraz contacted her sister, Toni Alcaraz, following the incident with the police, expressing distress and exhibiting visible signs of abuse. Toni Alcaraz recalled her sister’s tearful conversation, stating that Nikki’s eye had already started turning black, indicating severe injuries.

Subsequently, a family friend traveled to New Mexico to meet Alcaraz, planning to accompany her to California. However, on May 6, the day they were supposed to depart, Alcaraz informed the friend that she needed to find Stratton, causing the family friend to proceed to California without her. Since then, there have been no confirmed sightings of Alcaraz. However, Toni Alcaraz received a text message from her sister a few days later, stating that she was in Arizona and intended to drive to California.

According to WKRN, Stratton has an unrelated arrest warrant related to a probation violation stemming from a theft charge. Authorities are actively searching for him. Nikki Alcaraz is described as 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighing 160 lbs, with long brown hair and brown eyes.

Law enforcement agencies and Alcaraz’s family are urging anyone with information about her whereabouts or any related details to come forward and assist in the ongoing search effort.

Anybody with information is urged to contact the Moriarty, N.M., police department at 505-832-6060.

If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

Jake Massey
Jake Massey
Journalist at the Medialinker Group


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