Missing Bemidji girl found, Illinois man arrested

- A 21-year-old man has been arrested following the case of a missing 13-year-old Bemidji girl. She went missing Tuesday morning and was found later that afternoon.

Chris Morales of Oswego, Illinois, was arrested for Third Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct and Deprivation of Custodial/Parental Rights. 

The investigation started with a parent contacting the Beltrami County sheriff’s office Tuesday morning saying the teen was missing from her home.

Her parents found that she was not at home and did not go to school. According to police, her parents noted she was behaving suspiciously, and witnesses reported someone standing near the girl's home two days earlier.

Police discovered that the girl may have left with a man she met through social media websites. The neighbor was able to obtain a license plate number and description of the vehicle that had been parked nearby the residence earlier.

Authorities discovered that Morales and the teen may have traveled to the Twin City metro area earlier that day. The two were found in Minneapolis with the help of Bloomington and Minneapolis police and the Minnesota Bureau of Investigation.

Morales is currently being held in the Beltrami County jail.

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