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FBI: Social media or app may have played role in Cleveland and Elyria abduction cases

Posted at 1:29 PM, Aug 22, 2016

The FBI is looking into the possibility that the abduction and attempted abduction of two local girls could be connected to an app or social media.

"We have found that there could possibly be a social media, specifically an app,  linked to this case," said Special Agent Vicki Anderson.

FBI officials say they are looking at several apps that were used in the homes of both girls—a 10-year-old in Elyria and a 6-year-old in Cleveland. 

"There are different ones we are looking at, Kik is a big one. Musica.ly is a big one", said Anderson.

On Feb. 25, the 10-year-old Elyria girl woke her father to tell him that someone had tried to pull her out her bedroom window while she was sleeping.

The girl said she woke up and the man was pulling on her legs. He said if she cooperated, he wouldn't hurt her or her family.

The girl was able to break free from his grip and run to her father's room for help.

Her father went outside to see that someone had removed a step ladder from the yard and leaned it against the house, underneath his daughter's window. 

Officers searched the area, but were unable to find a man matching the description.

Months later, on May 21, a 6-year-old girl was taken from her home in the 3000 block of West 104th Street near Western Avenue. 

abdution

The girl was reportedly taken to a brick home with a white door and black front porch railings.

Police said the man arrived at the home around 5 a.m. and spent the entire day inside a room, possibly a bedroom, then left later that evening.

According to police, there were two people—described as a black male and a brown female—inside the home, possibly roommates, who likely didn't know the girl was in the home.

The 6-year-old told police that at one point the woman knocked on the door of the room and said she was cooking. While the suspect was communicating with the other people in the home, the girl was told to hide.

There were also two dogs—one white and one brown—in the home. The girl was dropped off after hours of being held.

"The individual we're looking for, reached in through the bedroom window in Elyria case. The suspect entered the house on West 104th and got the girl from the house. The suspect had alot of information to do that. That's why we think there is possibly a social media connection, specifically an app," added Anderson.

The FBI later released surveillance photos and videos of a person of interest who was seen walking down West 105th Place on May 14 around 2 a.m.  

There suspect has been connected to these two cases through DNA, but he could be responsible for others. 

A reward is being offered for information about this case. Call 216-622-6842 if you have a tip.