Federal kidnapping charge filed against suspect in Lenexa AMBER Alert
KANSAS CITY, Kan. — A man suspected in the kidnapping of a Lenexa teenager that set off an AMBER Alert last week is facing a federal charge in Kansas. Prosecutors filed a criminal complaint on Monday for kidnapping against 22-year-old Dechon White.
The alert went out Friday, July 6 just before 3 p.m., and was canceled just before 6 p.m. when the 13-year-old victim was found and police arrested the suspect in Minnesota.
Court documents say the victim’s family contacted police on the night of July 4 to report her missing. The victim’s mom told investigators that the suspect was presented as the victim’s friend and said he was 16 years old. He began staying at the victim’s home on July 1. The mom was suspicious, telling authorities she believed that White was as old as 18.
On July 4 at 2 p.m. White and the victim told her mom they were going to a mall, later that day she lost phone contact with her daughter. When she filed the missing person’s report, authorities confirmed that White was 22 years old after she positively identified his driver’s license.
Further investigation revealed that White purchased a round-trip Greyhound bus ticket for travel between St. Paul, Minn., and Kansas City. Furthermore, surveillance video showed the victim and White at the Kansas City Greyhound station on July 4 at 4 p.m., investigators say a one-way ticket to Minnesota was purchased using White’s middle and last name. Video from the bus showed the victim and White seated next to one another.
After the victim was found, she told investigators she met White online and initially said she was 16 years old, but later admitted she was actually 12 at the time. They had continued communication through social media and White planned his trip to the metro.
Once he arrived, the victim told investigators they decided to lie to her mom and say that White was 16 years old. She also said a plan was devised for the two of them to leave for Minnesota.
During his interview, White told investigators about his communication via social media with the victim and admitted he knew she was 12 when he traveled to Kansas City. He also admitted to purchasing the bus ticket for the victim, and investigators found a backpack that included letters where White professed his love of the victim.
White is in the Dakota County Jail and held on a $50,000 bond. The complaint says he could spend between 20 years to life in prison if convicted.