FAYETTEVILLE, North Carolina (Meredith) — A U.S. soldier has been charged in the kidnap and rape of a 12-year-old girl he allegedly was speaking to online, the Craven County Sheriff’s Office said Monday during a press conference.
James Murdock Peele, 19, is charged with first-degree statutory rape, first-degree kidnapping and first-degree burglary, according to The Army Times.
The girl was reported missing Sunday morning when her grandmother woke up to find the girl gone from their home. She told police she found her granddaughter’s window open and a ransom note left on her pillow.
Police did not release details about what the ransom note said.
A search of the girl's Facebook account led authorities to Peele, police said. Authorities located her at Peele's home about two hours away in Fayetteville, North Carolina.
Peele is a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg in North Carolina.