The girl Charlotte who was kidnapped and located in New York/Courtesy of the family
A nine-year-old girl who disappeared during a family camping trip in upstate New York has been found "safe and sound," police said Tuesday, following a two-day search operation that ended with the arrest of a suspect in her abduction. Charlotte Cena disappeared while riding her bike Saturday evening in Murau Lake Park, a wooded area about 60 miles north of Albany.
Governor Kathy Hochul said during a news conference that investigators were able to identify fingerprints on a ransom letter left by the suspect, Craig Nelson Ross Jr., 47. "What happened was extraordinary," she said. While the rest of Charlotte's family remained at the site where she disappeared, police following their home saw someone drop a note in their mailbox at 4:20 a.m., she said.
The fingerprints were consistent with Ross's, which were in her database after he drove under the influence of alcohol in 1999. The governor said law enforcement connected Ross to a property owned by his mother, and agents entered and found him in a trailer around 18:30 p.m. "After some resistance, the suspect was taken into custody and the little girl was found in a closet," the New York governor said. "She knew she was being saved. She knew she was in safe hands."
According to the governor, Charlotte was taken to a local hospital, as is customary in such cases. She added that she did not appear to have suffered any physical injuries and was reunited with her family. The suspect in Charlotte's abduction is still under investigation, which authorities say is still ongoing.
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