TBI: Tip led to Amber Alert subjects in rural Calif. cabin


NASHVILLE — The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has released more details in the rescue of an Amber Alert subject in California who was missing from Middle Tennessee.

The TBI received a tip late Wednesday night that led authorities in Siskiyou County in northern California to 15-year-old Elizabeth Thomas and 50-year-old Tad Cummins, according to a TBI release.

The two were found early Thursday morning at a rural cabin in Cecilville.

Thomas was the subject of a Tennessee Amber Alert issued March 14 after having been kidnapped a day earlier by Cummins, a former teacher at her school in Maury County, Tennessee, the release states.

On March 17, the TBI added Cummins to the state’s Top 10 Most Wanted list.

Siskiyou County authorities located the Nissan Rogue the pair were traveling in Thursday morning and later located Cummins and Thomas, according to the release.

They say Cummins surrendered without incident and Thomas was recovered by law enforcement officers.

At the time of the release, efforts to reunite Thomas with her family were ongoing.

Cummins is in the custody of the Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Department without bond awaiting extradition to Tennessee. He faces charges of sexual contact with a minor and aggravated kidnapping.

“Our Intelligence Analysts and Agents have worked tirelessly since issuing this AMBER Alert to process more than 1,500 leads from all 50 states,” TBI Director Mark Gwyn says in the release. “What happened in California this morning, however, proves it only takes one person to lead to a successful end. We are extremely thankful the hard work of all partners in this search has paid off. We’re also grateful for the public’s support and vigilance throughout this search effort.”

The TBI credits the FBI, the Maury County Sheriff’s Department and the Office of 22nd District Attorney General Brent Cooper for their assistance in the search.

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