Corridor Man Charged With Bringing Young Teen to Iowa, Hiding Her
A man from the corridor is facing federal charges after authorities say he traveled to Tennessee over the New Year's holiday and returned to Iowa with a 14-year-old girl he met on social media. The FBI says he then kept her hidden in his home.
According to Fox 17, authorities allege 46-year-old Joseph D. Foster of North Liberty took the girl from Hamilton County, Tennesee. She was reported missing on January 2.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and Hamilton County Sheriff's Office were able to determine a person had been communicating with the girl on multiple social media apps. The Chattanoogan reports the girl had received access to someone else's Amazon account and purchases had been made. The criminal complaint shows that it was believed the teen was "being sexually exploited online, and an FBI investigation was opened."
On January 9, FBI agents interviewed Foster at his home. The Chattanoogan says he told agents he recognized the girl from a chat forum, but that he'd never met her in person and didn't know where she was. The teen called her grandma later that day, telling her she wanted to come home.
On January 14, during a police interview, the girl told authorities she met Joseph Foster on Snapchat when she was 13, that he picked her up in a truck that she described in detail, and that he drove her back to Iowa on January 2. She said she stayed in a hotel room for two days and that Foster bought her hair dye, food, and new clothes. She told police he then snuck her into his home, where his ex-wife was living upstairs. The girl told police she had to sneak around the house and that she was there, hiding when FBI agents came to the house to interview Foster. After FBI agents left, the girl says Foster drove her back to Tennessee and told her to tell everyone she'd never left the state. Soon after, she called her grandmother. The girl was later put into protective custody.
While FBI agents were at Foster's home on January 9, his ex-wife told them that she believed Foster possessed child porn. She also confirmed to agents that Foster had told her he was going out of state when he left the North Liberty home on New Year's Day.
Foster was arrested on January 16. He's been charged with Transportation of a Minor with Intent to Engage in Sexual Activity as well as Coercion and Enticement.
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