Tuesday night, three children were on their way home and 41-year-old Kennith Wilcox was charged with their kidnapping. NewsChannel 11 obtained court documents that reveal some disturbing details in this case. The arrest warrant states investigators checked Wilcox's apartment, the Ponderosa Apartment Complex, and they say it appeared no one lived there. Authorities report there was no furniture or anything to show Wilcox planned to return to the apartment.
The warrant also states he offered to pay for 9-year-old Angel Contreras, 11-year-old Jasmine Bazan, and 15-year-old Lashawnda Theriac to join him and his young son on a trip to Six Flags in Arlington. When the group didn't return home Sunday as planned, the families alerted police.
Now, Wilcox is jailed on a $750,000 charged with aggravated kidnapping. Authorities arrested him Tuesday morning near Idabel, Oklahoma. That's 452-miles away from Lubbock.
"When we got the phone call, it was good, but when we found out that Jasmine wasn't with them, it hurt," Contreras and Bazan's Aunt Judy Ortiz tells NewsChannel 11 the wait was horrible. The families learned Theriac and Ortiz's nephew Contreras were safe just before midnight Monday, but they also learned authorities believed her niece, Bazan, was still with Kenneth Wilcox.
According to the arrest warrant, investigators believe he posed a great danger to the children's safety. The warrant states Wilcox had intent to injure, violate, sexually abuse or terrorize each child.
"Much of the information that they used to locate this third child is information that they were able to garner from the two children that they recovered initially," Lubbock Police Captain Greg Stevens said. The warrant states Theriac and Contreras called their parents from a trailer belonging to Wilcox's cousin near Shinewell. The warrant states they used the cousin's cell phone to call.
Lubbock Police immediately contacted the McCurtain County Sheriff's Office in southeastern Oklahoma. The two children said they'd been camping in different places since Friday with little food, but they said Wilcox had taken Bazan to a Wal-Mart, about 19-miles away in Idabel.
Authorities from Oklahoma and Arkansas spread out, and just before 8:30 a.m. Tuesday they found Wilcox and Bazan in a car in a rural area near Shinewell. "His intentions are certainly suspect at this point, but what they are remains a point of speculation," Stevens said.
"I was here when Kenneth's cousin called, he had two of the kids, he's the one that helped us, and I would like to thank him," Judy Ortiz said. Now, the families wait for their loved ones to return, and wonder why Wilcox would have taken them. "From what I can tell you need some serious help, so I'm not wishing you bad, but from what you did, I've got to say is get the help you need," Contreras & Bazan's uncle Mario Ortiz said.
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