After over a month on the run, Tennessee kidnapper Tad Cummins is in custody in a California jail, awaiting extradition. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) held a press conference today and answered pressing questions about where Cummins and Elizabeth Thomas have been since March 13.
The TBI is still working on discovering the preliminary facts in the case, and there are still a lot of questions unanswered. Yet, from what they’ve learned so far, Cummins, 50, and Elizabeth Thomas, 15, were hiding out in a remote area in Blackbear Ranch, in Cecilville, California, near the Oregon state line. The area is so far away from society that cellphone coverage is scarce. Authorities investigating the case had trouble getting to the area because of snow on the ground.
TBI, FBI Agents and Maury Co deputies en route to California to bring Elizabeth Thomas home to Tennessee. pic.twitter.com/EChfH0beCq
— Susan Niland (@TBISusanNiland) April 20, 2017
Although a few outlets reported that Cummins and Thomas were in a commune, TBI couldn’t 100% confirm it. Cummins and Elizabeth were living in a remote cabin, however, Black Bear Ranch is considered a commune where people want to “get back to the land, get out of the city, and start a new life together in the mountains.”
TBI spokesperson Josh DeVine said that a tip from a local in the area is what let authorities to Cummins. Police investigated the area for around a week and a half, and when they were certain it was indeed Cummins, they arrested him. Cummins went peacefully.
TBI Director Mark Gwyn stated that Elizabeth was healthy and unharmed. She’s scheduled to fly back to Tennessee on a TBI flight. Her location will remain hidden.
Cummins faces a federal felony charge of transporting a minor across state lines, as well charges of sexual contact with a minor and aggravated kidnapping.
Check back with Crime Online as additional details become available.
[Feature Photo: TBI]