BREAKING: Tad Cummins plans to change kidnapping plea to guilty

A former Tennessee teacher accused of kidnapping an underage girl and transporting her across multiple states has filed a motion to plead guilty to federal charges.

WKRC reports that Tad Cummins has filed a motion to plead guilty to charges of transportation of a minor across state lines for the purposes of having criminal sexual intercourse. He is accused of driving with 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas, a student at the high school where he worked, from Tennessee to California, prompting a nationwide AMBER Alter. Cummins and Thomas they were eventually spotted by a maintenance worker at a remote compound who recognized them from news reports. Cummins was arrested and Thomas was reunited with her family.

In May 2017, Cummins submitted a guilty plea to the federal kidnapping charges. If convicted at trial, he would have faced a minimum sentence of 10 years and a maximum sentence of life in prison.n

In the motion filing obtained by WKRC, a public defender for Cummins writes that the suspect is requesting to change his plea “after case review, consultation, and personal reflection.”

Cummins also faces kidnapping and theft charges in California, and may face kidnapping charges in Tennessee.


[Feature image: Tad Cummins/Tennessee Bureau of Investigation]