News From Terre Haute, Indiana

December 23, 2013

Police investigate alleged abduction, injuries to girl, 15

Official: Victim reports vehicle was cargo van, man appeared to be delivering a package

Staff Report
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Police are asking the public to help them find a pair of suspects wanted in connection with an abduction of a teen girl Sunday in southern Vigo County.

The Vigo County Sheriff’s Department, in a news release issued before dawn Monday, stated a 15-year-old female reported being forced into a cargo van outside her residence near Harlan Road, east of Hoosier Prairie Elementary School.

The teen told police she heard a knock at the door of her home about 5:30 p.m. Sunday and opened the door because the man outside was holding a box and appeared to be a delivery person. She stepped outside and the man attempted to grab her, she said. She then ran back inside and the man pursued her, she told police. She then ran outside and was confronted by another man with a knife and was then forced inside a van.

The teen, who was later released, had minor injuries consistent with being taken by force, police said. She was later treated and released from Terre Haute Regional Hospital.

The suspect vehicle is described as a cargo-style mini van with faded burgundy paint. The outside was described as dull with no shine. The van also reportedly included white lettering on the side, including a letter “K” that was larger than the other letters.

The floor of the van had a plywood covering, she told police.

Several leads were telephoned in to police Monday, said Clark Cottom, chief deputy with the Vigo County Sheriff’s Department. However, as of mid-afternoon, the vehicle had not been found, nor had the suspects.

The suspects are described as white males. One is 5 feet 8 inches tall in his mid 20s or early 30s with a brown goatee. He was wearing black cargo pants, a blue belt, black polo shirt and a black Nike hat with a blue swoosh symbol and dark Oakley-style glasses and black gloves.

The second suspect is described as a white male, 5 feet 8 to 5 feet 10, mid 20s or early 30s, with medium-length curly brown hair and dark clothing.

Detectives were reviewing surveillance footage from Hoosier Prairie Elementary School and from nearby businesses, Cottom said.

Anyone with information that could help in this case is urged to contact the Vigo County Sheriff’s Department at 812-462-3226 or anonymously at 812-238-STOP.