Cops Think Teacher Kidnapped His 15-Year-Old Student

Lauren Perry
March 20, 2017

Authorities say Tad Cummins, 50, kidnapped Elizabeth Thomas, a freshman at the high school where Cummins taught until this week.

Jason Whatley, an attorney for Elizabeth's father, Anthony Thomas, told media this week that another student saw Cummins kissing Elizabeth on January 24. He didn't just steal from me, he stole from the whole community. "If something happens to her, if she gets injured, how is she going to get to a doctor?" he told the local media outlet.

"Having now been on the run for more than five days, Cummins may have taken her, frankly, anywhere", DeVine said.

At the vigil on Saturday, Thomas' family members pleaded for her return. The girl is in imminent danger, they said. "We just don't want to go on without you", he said.

You can see the TBI press release here. Cummins has been added to the state's "Top 10 Most Wanted" list.

Cummins was suspended in February after he was caught kissing the young student, and has since been fired.

Later that afternoon, Thomas and Cummins were about 80 miles away in Decatur, Alabama, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation officials said they suspect.

Emotional pleas came from 15-year-old's loved ones. Her parents reported her missing later in the day.

According to the TBI, that charge was based on an "alleged interaction" with a teen, but they did not confirm whether it was Thomas.

A statewide Amber Alert from the TBI says Cummins "may have been abusing his role as a teacher to groom this vulnerable young girl for some time in an effort to lure and potentially sexually exploit her".

Cummins in the weeks before he vanished with the teenager. He is believed to be armed with two handguns and driving a Silver Nissan Rogue with Tennessee tag number 976ZPT.

Tad Cummins is accused of luring Elizabeth Thomas into his vehicle outside of a restaurant in Columbia, Tennessee and disappearing with the girl on 13 March, investigators said on Saturday.

Investigators believe Cummins is now hiding out in secluded areas or has left the Southeast with the girl. "This is not who you are.Please do the right thing and turn yourself in to the police and bring Beth home", Jill Cummins said.

Thomas is white, blonde hair, hazel eyes, 5 feet 5 inches tall and 120 pounds.

The student, 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas was last seen around 7:30 or 8 a.m. Monday at a Shoney's restaurant in Columbia, Tennessee, where she had been dropped off by a friend, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.

Other reports by VgToday

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