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The Latest: ‘Help me,’ kidnapped girl says after car crash

Investigators with Metropolitan Police Department examine the scene after a pursuit Sunday, April 2, 2017, in Washington. According to Capt. David Sledge with the Metropolitan Police Department, officers arrested a man after the pursuit and rescued a girl who was reported missing from a Charlotte, N.C., home. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the slaying of a North Carolina couple and the arrest of their son discovered with his missing 11-year-old niece in Washington (all times local):

8:15 p.m.

Court documents say an 11-year-old girl who was allegedly kidnapped from North Carolina cried out “Help me” when police officers in the U.S. capital found her wedged between the driver’s and front passenger’s seat after the car she was in crashed.

The documents, released late Monday, describe the police pursuit of the car allegedly driven by 36-year-old Curtis Atkinson Jr. of Charlotte, North Carolina. Atkinson is the uncle of Arieyana Forney. He is charged with killing his parents, who were Arieyana’s guardians, in North Carolina.

In the court documents, police describe Atkinson leading them on a chase, which ended when the car rear-ended another vehicle in Washington.

Officers say the force of the collision was so great that the child, two adults and a dog were all thrown to the front seat.

Arieyana was taken to a hospital for evaluation.

5:15 p.m.

Authorities say a woman in a car with a man suspected of killing his parents in North Carolina and fleeing with his 11-year-old niece is accused of kidnapping.

Officers from the Metropolitan Police Department in the U.S. capital found the three Sunday night and a chase and a crash ensued. No one was seriously injured.

In court documents filed Monday ahead of their appearances in court in Washington, authorities said 36-year-old Curtis Atkinson Jr. of Charlotte, North Carolina, was charged in North Carolina with homicide.

The records said 25-year-old Nakkia Cooper of Charlotte was wanted in North Carolina for kidnapping. Police had spelled her first name as Nikkia. The documents said authorities planned to extradite the pair to their home state.

An Amber Alert was issued for the missing child Sunday after her grandparents, who were her guardians, were found dead in their home and her uncle’s car was seen leaving the area.


3:30 p.m.

A relative of a North Carolina man suspected of killing his parents and taking his 11-year-old niece to Washington, D.C., says Curtis Atkinson Jr. was not estranged from his parents.

Nina Chandler of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, is Atkinson’s first cousin. She says the family doesn’t know what happened or why he was found with his brother’s missing daughter, Arieyana, after fleeing the family home in North Carolina where Atkinson’s parents were found slain.

Atkinson’s parents had become Arieyana’s guardians when the girl’s father, 29-year-old Micah Atkinson, was killed in 2013. Micah Atkinson was Curtis Atkinson Jr.’s brother.


11:15 a.m.

A North Carolina man suspected of killing his parents and found with his missing 11-year-old niece in Washington, D.C., is facing a court appearance following his weekend arrest after a chase and crash.

Curtis Atkinson Jr. is scheduled to appear in Superior Court on Monday afternoon, a day after his arrest. Police say Atkinson’s 11-year-old niece, who authorities believe was kidnapped Sunday after her grandparents were slain in North Carolina, was found in the car.

Atkinson was driving a car described in an Amber Alert. Authorities say they received a 911 call from a female in the car with Atkinson and then swarmed the area. Also arrested was another woman in the car, 25-year-old Nikkia Cooper, who was being held on drug charges.


7:45 a.m.

Police say a 911 call led officers in Washington, D.C., to an 11-year-old girl who authorities believe was kidnapped after her grandparents were slain in North Carolina.

Maj. Mike Smathers of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said at a news conference that a female in the car described in an Amber Alert called 911 Sunday saying she had been kidnapped. Based on the caller’s description of her location, Smathers says police flooded the area and spotted the car.

After a chase and crash near Washington’s monuments and memorials, Metropolitan Police Department Capt. David Sledge says the kidnapping suspect was arrested.

Police say the girl’s uncle, Curtis Atkinson Jr., is suspected of killing his parents at their Charlotte home.

Sledge says the girl was taken to a hospital but appears to be OK.

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