LOS ANGELES (AP) – A phone tip and a Superman tattoo led to the Mexico arrest and return to the U.S. of a fugitive charged with abducting and sexually assaulting a 10-year-old Los Angeles girl.
Tobias Summers, 30, a fugitive for nearly a month, was arrested in a Mexican village where he had checked into a drug and alcohol treatment center, authorities said.
Summers appeared in court in Los Angeles County court on Thursday, but his arraignment was postponed until May 2. He had been charged in his absence with kidnapping, burglary and nearly three dozen counts of sexual assault.
The FBI had received a phone tip Tuesday night that Summers was at the treatment center and alerted Mexican authorities, who identified him Wednesday by the Superman logo tattooed on his chest, FBI Special Agent in Charge Tim Delaney told a news conference.
The girl’s family released a statement thanking and praising police and FBI agents.
“Throughout this ordeal, they’ve been working around the clock hunting this man _ not only for justice for our daughter, but to make sure he’s unable to hurt anyone again,” the statement read.
Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck credited a $25,000 FBI reward that was highly publicized south of the border for the phone tip.
The FBI website later showed pictures of Summers and his tattoos with the word “captured” across the bottom of each photo.
He was arrested without a struggle in the village on the coast between Tijuana and Ensenada, according to Alfredo Arenas, international liaison for the Baja California state police.
Authorities believe Summers broke into the girl’s home on March 27 planning to burglarize it but instead abducted her at knifepoint. They believe Daniel Martinez, 29, who has pleaded not guilty to kidnapping and burglary, was waiting outside in a car the two used to flee with the girl.
Martinez soon abandoned the car and vanished, police said.
Summers took the girl to several locations and raped her, FBI agent Scott Garriola wrote in an affidavit.
Summers has a criminal record dating to 2002 that includes arrests for robbery, battery and grand theft auto.
Associated Press writers Christopher Weber and Shaya Tayefe Mohajer contributed to this report.
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