(PatriotWise.com) — A teenager who went missing in Texas has been found in a shed in North Carolina. The 13-year-old girl was allegedly taken to the Tar Heel State by a stranger she’d met on the internet, who persuaded her to leave home. She was seen on surveillance cameras entering the vehicle of Jorge Van Santos Camacho, 34, near her residence in the Dallas area. Texas law enforcement officers worked with the FBI to track Santos Camacho down to North Carolina and informed the local Sherriff’s office of his car registration. Officers conducted a vehicle stop and arrested the alleged kidnapper. He faces charges including abduction and human trafficking.
Davidson County Sheriff Richie Simmons issued a stark warning to parents at a press conference on March 13th. “Our message is going to be please help us out. I’m very thankful, I thank God that we were able to find this young girl. It may not be that case forever. What these children must go through. They don’t think who they’re talking to,” he said.
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has produced extensive and detailed guidance about the growing rate of internet-related child abduction. The term used for the manipulation of young people by adults online is “grooming” and the average age of a groomed child is 15. The majority – 78% – of the victims are girls. The Center warns that relationships are developed by adults who give the child compliments and engage in their social media output by liking or retweeting their posts. Groomers will often pretend to be younger and will engage children using the language of their contemporaries. Reports of so-called online enticement in the United States rose by 97.5% between 2019 and 2020. Only 2% of grooming cases involve an adult known to the child, the vast majority involve strangers whom the young person first encounters online. Groomers will often move from online to personal interaction by offering gifts or sanctuary to the child – these can include lodging, transportation, or food.
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