A person in Pennsylvania has been taken into custody and charged in reference to the disappearance of an Amish girl three weeks in the past, based on officers.
The Lancaster County District Lawyer’s Workplace mentioned in a information launch that Justo Smoker, 34, of Paradise, was arrested Friday and charged with felony kidnapping and misdemeanor false imprisonment within the seek for 18-year-old Linda Stoltzfoos.
Stoltzfoos has been lacking since June 21, when she was final seen strolling house from church within the Chicken-in-Hand space, positioned to the east of Lancaster.
“Investigators are actively looking and dealing to find out what occurred to Stoltzfoos after she was taken,” the district lawyer’s workplace mentioned Saturday. “Investigators have motive to consider Stoltzfoos was harmed following her abduction.”
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Smoker was arrested Friday evening at his job and arraigned Saturday morning on the 2 costs. At his arraignment, a decide made the 34-year-old ineligible for bail, citing the character of the costs and ongoing investigation.
In line with prosecutors, investigators on Friday night searched a rural location in Ronks, the place they consider Stoltzfoos might need been taken after being kidnapped.
“Investigators discovered buried in a wooded space articles of clothes believed to belong to Stoltzfoos,” the DAs’s office said.
Smoker’s automobile, a pink Kia Rio sedan with a “distinct spoiler” and “LCM” sticker on the trunk was seen parked within the rural space on June 23, based on police.
The 34-year-old grew to become an individual of curiosity within the investigation after police mentioned they obtained details about a pink/orange automobile seen within the Hole space on the afternoon of Stoltzfoos’ abduction.
A number of witnesses in that space additionally informed authorities they noticed an Amish feminine within the passenger seat of a automobile pushed by a male.
“Witness descriptions of the driving force and automobile are per Smoker and his automobile,” officers mentioned.
Investigators additionally revealed that they obtained and considered surveillance video that was enhanced by FBI forensic technicians that exhibits Stoltzfoos’ abduction on Beechdale Street, the place she would have been strolling again from church.
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“That video exhibits a pink Kia Rio concerned within the abduction,” the DA’s workplace mentioned.
The 18-year-old’s father reported her lacking when she didn’t return from a youth group late into the evening of June 21. Investigators confirmed that Stoltzfoos didn’t make it to that social gathering.
“Police discovered nothing indicating Stoltzfoos was sad and needed to go away her group,” officers mentioned.
The East Lampeter Township Police Division is being assisted by a number of companies of their investigation over the Amish girl’s disappearance, together with the FBI, Pennsylvania State Police and Lancaster County District Lawyer’s Workplace.
On Friday, the FBI offered a reward of as much as $10,000 for info resulting in her restoration.
Stoltzfoos has brown hair and blue eyes, and is roughly 5 ft, 10 inches tall and 125 kilos, police mentioned. She was final seen sporting a tan costume, white apron, and a black head protecting
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Investigators are asking anybody who might need seen Smoker — or his pink Kia Rio sedan — across the time Stoltzfoos was kidnapped, and within the days after, to contact police at 717-291-4676.
Fox Information’ Stephanie Pagones contributed to this report.
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