MARTINSVILLE, Va. — A Texas man has been taken into custody after the disappearance of a 12-year-old Virginia girl, authorities said.
Kaleb Christopher Merritt, 21, was captured by police in Henderson, North Carolina, after a manhunt that began Friday, according to authorities in Virginia. The girl was found with him, unharmed.
The girl was reported missing from her home in Bassett, Virginia on Friday afternoon.
Police said she and Merritt connected in December on Instagram and communicated through social media until Merritt traveled to Virginia earlier this month to meet her.
Merritt set up a camp in a wooded area behind the girl's home and met with her on several occasions, investigators said.
The two communicated via a messaging app before Merritt coerced her into leaving her home with him, police said.