A 12-year-old girl in Southern California was rescued from a possible predator Monday night when her father woke up and realized his daughter was missing from their home. A 27-year-old man that the preteen met through social media is now under investigation after allegedly luring the girl to meet him using gifts.
At about 2 a.m. Monday morning, Tim LeBlanc woke up to find his 12-year-old daughter’s bedroom window open and the girl missing from the house. LeBlanc says he wakes up every night to check on his kids. When he realized his daughter was gone, he got in his truck and drove around the neighborhood searching for her.
LeBlanc found his daughter down the street with an adult man.
“As soon as my daughter saw my truck she must have said something, because as soon as I saw them, she, like, came away and started backing away and he started trying to go the other direction," LeBlanc recalled. "I came around the corner, got out, apprehended him.”
The girl was about to get into the man’s Xtera SUV, according to NBC San Diego. The back door of the vehicle was open when LeBlanc arrived.
“I probably wouldn’t have a daughter if I hadn’t caught this,” said LeBlanc.
The 27-year-old alleged predator has since been taken into custody by Riverside County sheriff’s deputies and is facing felony charges. He has been identified as Scott Stillwell of San Diego. Officials said Stillwell allegedly drove more than an hour to prey on the young girl.
LeBlanc told NBC LA that his daughter met Stillwell, whom she believed to be a 16-year-old boy, through social media. After the man initially contacted the girl through Instagram, Stillwell lured the 12-year-old onto the social media site, Kik, NBC San Diego reported. LeBlanc said the two exchanged messages and the man sent his daughter naked photos of himself. Stillwell also is reported to have enticed the girl with gifts including a jacket, necklace and hat, according to NBC LA.
Stillwell is now facing two felony charges including meeting a minor with the intention of committing a lewd and lascivious act, and for providing harmful matter to a minor. Stillwell is currently behind bars with bail set at $25,000.
Stillwell’s family told NBC San Diego that they are “blown away” by the accusations against their son. They included that their son has mental health issues.
Photo Credit: Into Mobile, Tim LeBlanc/NBC San Diego