Archive for Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Man arrested in case of missing Texas teen found in Lawrence

Police have found a 15-year-old missing Texas girl. She was traced to Lawrence through her MySpace account.

July 22, 2008, 12:58 p.m. Updated July 23, 2008, 12:31 a.m.


Police tipped off by neighbors of a missing Texas girl's whereabouts took a 33-year-old man and the 15-year-old girl into custody yesterday, the girl's mother said.

Ricky Lynn Bacon Jr. was arrested on charges including aggravated indecent liberties with a child and contributing to the delinquency of a minor at 1:22 Monday afternoon. Both Bacon and the girl were taken into custody about 9 a.m. Monday, after they were located at a residence at the 700 block of Connecticut Street.

The Journal-World typically does not name suspects involved with sex crimes unless they plead guilty or are convicted. But the scope of this case, spanning multiple states and including the search for a child, spurred the decision to name Bacon.

The girl, Ashley Brown, of Katy, Texas, was taken to the juvenile detention center. She will be transported back to Texas within two or three days, said Harris County Sheriff's deputy Albert Perez, who investigated the case.

Ashley went missing April 24 and had a history of running away, said her mother, who requested her name not be used. Ashley's mother said her daughter was rebellious, had trouble in school and often sought attention. But she is glad to know her daughter is safe.

"I can't even explain the relief that I'm feeling, knowing that she's alive and healthy and off the street," she said. "Maybe now ... we can finally get the help she needs."

Lawrence police were notified by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation that the missing girl was possibly in Lawrence, a police report said.

Texas investigators discovered that the girl had signed into her MySpace account July 8 in Lawrence. The log-in was from an IP address registered to an unknown research and education network in Lawrence.

The girl's mother said she gained access to Ashley's MySpace account and was able to determine that she was with Bacon, whom Ashley may have met during a previous runaway attempt in November.

The family enlisted the help of the Family Crisis Network of Greater Houston, an organization that specializes in helping families whose children having fallen victim to Internet predators. The girl's mother said the organization was key to finding her daughter.

She said Ashley attempted to run away two other times in the week before she went missing in late April. She has had no contact with her daughter since she ran away, but will be grateful for her safe return.

"She could have seriously ended up in a scenario that could have endangered her life in the long run," she said.

Craig Gill, director of the Family Crisis Network of Greater Houston, which assisted in finding Ashley, said law enforcement agencies were aided by his organization, as well as security personnel from MySpace.

He praised the Lawrence Police Department and KBI for their work, and said his organization will continue to help Ashley and her family when she returns to Texas.

"We've extended our services to the mother for consultation, for anything we may be able to do to assist," he said. "We're just looking for a safe return, and all we can do is pray and move on to the next step."

Neighbors said the house where the pair were found may have been occupied by at least two other people. The residents kept to themselves, said Kristin Morland, 32, who lives nearby.

"It's hard to tell who lives there," she said.

She said past residents of the house, a two-story home with overgrown grass and ivy crawling the walls, trained pit bulls in the yard, and other residents were never engaged in the neighborhood.

"It seems like that house always has people that are doing questionable things," she said.

Staff writer Jesse Fray contributed to this report.


METALQ2 9 years, 8 months ago

LPD, You never get any credit. Great job.

Steve Jacob 9 years, 8 months ago

As far as we know, maybe he gave her a better life then she was living. It may not be very different from the polygamist compound in Texas, and not one is going to jail out of all that mess. It just does not sound like he is a monster like he is being made out to be, but I again could be wrong.

geniusmannumber1 9 years, 8 months ago

Oh, never mind then. Anonymous internet person who just created an LJW account has super-secret information. My bad. Let's string him up.

jakenming 9 years, 8 months ago

If you're going to narrow it down to 10 or 12 houses, you should go ahead and give the full address. Otherwise, you cast suspicion on the entire block.

Quigly 9 years, 8 months ago

OnlyTheOne, fo eduncated peepole that meens l-i-b-r-a-r-y. And why isn't this guys name in the paper? I want to know the sickos name. I am glad the girl was found. That is just wrong, 33 years old? That is a pedophile in my book!

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

They can't. This guy actually has rights. If and when he is formally convicted, his name may get released and that's the best you will get.

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

Super Secret information? No. The facts. Know the family quite well.

OnlyTheOne 9 years, 8 months ago

"to an unknown research and education network in Lawrence."Somebody wanna 'splain what this is all about? This looks like as much of a news story as that of the "missing" girl!

independent_rebel 9 years, 8 months ago

Good job, LPD. Now, I wonder what the full story is.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 9 years, 8 months ago

Something tells me he will learn to regret the choices he made.

1Patriot 9 years, 8 months ago

shirinisb...?I'm just curious, how is it you know where all these run-a-way foster children are? Are you their case worker?

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

You are wrong. I know the minor female child involved in this case and her family very well. She need help, and there is hope that we can finally get her the help she needs now that she is found. This 33 year old man knew who she was as of the first week of June and lied to police before running with her again. He deserves everything he gets.

domino 9 years, 8 months ago

People need to understand that the police can't and don't release all their information to the public/media durring an ongoing investigation - never have - never will! Part of detective work. Just glad to know the girl is ok.

geniusmannumber1 9 years, 8 months ago

The "sicko's" name isn't in the paper because he hasn't been convicted of a crime. Say what you will about the LJW, this is one area where they do the right thing. Of course, you can probably find the information on other news outlets that are a little less scrupulous, but I've got to give props to the rare occasions that they avoid being entirely sensational.

shirinisb 9 years, 8 months ago

This is very upsetting. I work directly with foster children who have ran away and I call the police from right outside of the house they are in and the police refuse to do anything. They knock on the door, the kids that live there simply tell the police they're not there and the police do nothing more.Keep in mind that these children are in FOSTER care, which means custody of the state of Kansas. This means that you and I as taxpayers are financially responsible for them. NEVER has a police officer in Lawrence forced their way into a home where it is known that these girls are (and I'm speaking of several incidents over the past year) yet they are tracking IP addresses for this one specifically?Why is a girl from Texas more important than 15 and 14 year old girls from Lawrence?

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

These kids become facinated with the process of attempting to thwart the system and see what all they CAN get away with. This girl is no stranger to that process. shirinisbThe children (or adults with free will as it is) you refer to do deserve the same consideration. This has been a problem in Texas and I suspect is a nationwide issue. Running away should be made a crime. It is because they can get away with it knowing running away is NOT illegal that these kids keep doing it.

jakenming 9 years, 8 months ago

my point was that if they are not going to name the address, they shouldn't list the block. Narrowing it down to that few and then leaving it vague only encourages rumor and speculation. It does nothing to protect anyone. No point in it at all. Again, bad journalism.

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

beobachterAgreed. She is not an innocent little angel and DID know what she was doing. The family realizes this as well. News flash...she will be in jail for other reasons for some time to come.

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

1Patriot Exactly. But the law limits the parent's ability to do so until their at least 16 in most states. It's a battle to get to that point.

smartmomma 9 years, 8 months ago

Name:RICKY LYNN BACON Address: 741 CONNECTICUT APT. B , Lawrence , 66044 According to this is the address

boo_boo 9 years, 8 months ago

Lawrence PD DID NOT track the IP addresses. This was done in the course of the Texas hunt for her after some serious persuasion to finally invistigate the case at that level. The Texas investigators then alerted Lawrence to the situation. I believe perp and minor should BOTH be accountible for their actions. Almost all teenagers know that this is illegal and yet, like drug dealers soliciting minors to do their work, know that the minors will get off on minimal at best charges.

weluvbowling 9 years, 8 months ago

I am glad someone finally pointed out that the name of the person arrested was in the article because as I was reading through no one mentioned it until KSA_21_3503...It even states, "The Journal-World typically does not name suspects involved with sex crimes unless they plead guilty or are convicted. But the scope of this case, spanning multiple states and including the search for a child, spurred the decision to name Bacon."I hope that the family gets the child the help that she needs and this guy gets what he deserves!

1Patriot 9 years, 8 months ago

Hey, If they feel their life is so bad, let them become emancipated. Put their rebellious little a** out in the real world. The ones who really have a hard life at home will be able to make their life better, because they "want" a better life. The ones who are whiney little spoiled snots will get the chance to find out doing the dishes, your homework, coming home at curfew, keeping your room and your nose clean wasn't such a bad deal after all.

unite2revolt 9 years, 8 months ago

Interesting. I got a call recently from someone trying to find a girl with the last name Brown (my last name as well) in Lawrence, they did not identify themselves as law enforcement. I wonder if I was speaking to someone from this agency in Texas or possibly the mother.I also wonder how you can tell a trained pittbull from one that lacks training. Do they sit on command?

angel4dennis 9 years, 8 months ago

In the state of Kansas, you may not kick a minor under the age of 18 out of your house. This includes changing the locks, ect. The state may charge you with abandonment, no matter what the bratty minor has done, YOU are responsible for the "child" until they are 18. So I hope the parents take on some of the responsibility for this child that felt the need to run 2 states away with a man twice her age. Seems to me there is more issues at home than we know. Time will bring out the entire story but I believe it is not meant for us to know the whole story at this time. The PD and investigators need time to piece everything together to make charges stick so this man can be prosecuted if necessary. So let's all be patient and not jump to demanding the entire story from the LJW, they do a fine job with what they are allowed to do. If they give too much info, the guy could walk.

terrapin2 9 years, 8 months ago

beobachter - There are many good reasons why it is against the law to abandon your 15 yr old child! And to think you are somebody's grandparent. How awful for them. If I had been in any serious trouble with my parents as a teenager my grandparents would have been there to help us, not push us further apart! But that's off the point for this article. I agree both parties are culpable, but the 33 yr old definitely deserves far more severe punishment for his actions. At 33 he's plenty old enough to know what he was doing was wrong, and to be aware of what the consequences would be. But at 15 yrs of age their brains aren't even fully developed so they aren't equipped with the same kind of decision-making skills that an older person has.

geekin_topekan 9 years, 8 months ago

You can find the name and charges every morning at the DOuglas County Sheriff website.Click on "booking recap".

bearded_gnome 9 years, 8 months ago

I am glad she is now safe. we don't know whether boo-boo is legit. there've been other poster hoaxes. don't just believe something 'cuz its posted here. for all we know, she may be completely innocent, tricked away by said 33-year-old. boo-boo also may have an axe to grind. Only the one, I also wondered about the "unknown research and educational network." brought images of tunnels like the one in Hogan's Heroe's running through lawrence with clandestine network fiberoptics, off of the net. there used to be KRen run by KU. Kansas Research and Educational Network? stories report she's being held at the Juvy. whatever her part in this, I hope she'll be okay, and the adult man gets a lot of time behind bars.finally, Beo reveals one heckuva lot of bitterness! wow. not all teen girls act the way you experienced. d--n!

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