Father of missing teen says she was brainwashed

Lauren Perry
April 21, 2017

Culleoka is about 60 miles (100 kilometres) south of Nashville near the Alabama state line.

Rep. Sheila Butt, a Republican state lawmaker who represents Columbia, said Thursday was a great day for her community.

"Many thought the Nissan Rogue was long gone, but there it was", he said.

A representative from the Federal Bureau of Investigation said Cummins would face federal charges in addition to the state charges TBI already filed against him.

In a news conference today, authorities said Thomas looked to be healthy and physically unharmed, but measures would be taken to make sure the 15-year-old is sound of mind and spirit.

"It appears that she is healthy and that she is not injured and this is incredible", said Kat Thomas, the victim's sister. Her location will remain hidden. "Whether she was "brainwashed or went willingly"? We don't know what the situation is yet". An Amber Alert had been issued for Thomas. The process of extraditing Cummins to Tennessee could take weeks.

Teacher Tad Cummins, 50. disappeared with his student on March 13, weeks after a student reported seeing them kissing inside a classroom. "Just release her. Drop her off somewhere, somewhere safe, somewhere where she can be found and let her get back home to her family, and we'll worry about what's going to happen to you later".

Michael "Monk" O'Hare, who said he was out of town that evening, owns property in the small, forested California hamlet of Cecilville, including the 12 by 12-foot wood cabin where he said the pair was found. About 45,000 people live there, according to the U.S. Census.

The two were found in a northern California cabin, three hours northwest of Redding. They kept the vehicle under surveillance for several hours.

"As we have said from the start, it only takes one tip", Gwyn said.

Officers ran down more than 1,500 leads and put in countless hours during the search for her, he said.

Earlier, authorities in California said the pair were found at a commune, but those reports were incorrect. Days after TBI issued the Amber Alert, his wife publicly begged her husband to turn himself in and bring Thomas back safe. The SRT worked in freezing weather conditions but resolved this mission without anyone getting hurt, which was a good day for our Department, the female victim, and her family. The couple has two children together. The school system said the community can now begin healing. He said Thursday he didn't want to talk about the teacher, Tad Cummins, who is accused of kidnapping the girl.

"I would describe the cabin as a one room cabin", said the deputy.

A suspected kidnapping like this is a rarity in Columbia, said Mayor Dean Dickey.

Thomas added his daughter would need therapy, and her family planned to be patient with her. "Tad is going to have happen whatever the Federal Bureau of Investigation chooses". I am proud of the men and women of this Department that played a role in this potentially risky surveillance and arrest, especially the Special Response Team responsible for the safe and successful resolution of this 6-week ordeal.

Cummins has since been fired from the school district.

Other reports by VgToday

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