Edgewater, FL - A 13-year-old Oak Hill girl is safe after Volusia Sheriff's deputies went searching from motel to motel in the area, finding her in a room at the All Suites Motel with 22-year-old Tyler Thompson last Thursday (February 18) evening.
Deputies responded to the girl's grandmother's missing child report. The girl hadn't come home from school, and never went to her basketball game after school that day. The investigation led deputies to one of the girl's friends who said the victim was planning on going to a motel with someone she met online. The friend said she thought the man’s name started with a T, possibly Tyler, and that he was from Orlando. She said he may have picked up the victim at the Dollar General store in Oak Hill.
A check on surveillance video from that store showed images of the victim. An employee reported the girl said she was waiting for someone to pick her up.
Deputies showed the victim's image to motel clerks during the search and saw the name Tyler Thompson with an address out of Orlando on the guest register at the third one, the All Suites Motel. Deputies went to his room and knocked on the door several times before Thompson finally answered, and the victim came running.
Thompson was taken into custody on a charge of interference with child custody, with the Edgewater Police Department (EPD) adding a charge of traveling to meet after using a computer to lure a child. EPD is working with the State Attorney’s Office on potential additional charges in this case.
Thompson posted a bond of $15,000 on the current charges. More charges are pending and that bond is expected to increase.