A 12-year-old girl reported missing from Cornelia Tuesday has been found safe in Florida.
“On Tuesday, July 14, at approximately 11 a.m., the child’s family believed that she had run a routine errand, but she never returned home,” said Georgia Bureau of Investigation spokeswoman Nelly Miles. “At approximately 8 p.m., the family of the missing child reported her disappearance to the Cornelia Police Department.”
The GBI office in Cleveland was requested about 10:30 p.m. Tuesday to assist in locating the missing child.
The child was located safe just after 7 a.m. in Palm Beach County, Fla.
“Throughout the night, agents and investigators learned that the missing child likely left her home to meet a subject authorities believe she met online,” Miles said. “The subject, later identified as Martin Francisco-Tomas, approximately 20 years old, traveled to Cornelia and took the child with him to Palm Beach County, Fla. With the dedicated assistance of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office and the information learned by investigators, Francisco-Tomas was located with the child at a residence in Palm Beach County, Fla., and is now in custody. Francisco-Tomas is in custody on Georgia warrants for interstate interference with custody. Tomas is pending extradition back to Georgia to face charges. Additional charges are expected.”
The investigation is continuing and upon completion will be provided to the Mountain Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office for prosecution.