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Facebook leads police to alleged kidnapper, child pornographer

Police say Facebook led them to an alleged kidnapper hiding in Nevada
A girl reported missing logs onto Facebook, leads police to alleged kidnapper in Nevada

When a teenage girl logged onto Facebook, it helped police find her and another girl who were kidnapped and taken to Nevada by a man, according to media reports.

Police in Sparks, Nev., arrested Nicholas Rider Wessel, 37, of Richmond, Calif., on Tuesday after being tipped off to his whereabouts by Modesto police.

According to the Modesto Bee, one of the two teenage girls Wessel allegedly kidnapped logged onto Facebook, allowing authorities to trace the source of her Internet connection.

Wessel had convinced the girls, a 14-year-old from Modesto and a 15-year-old from Richmond, to go with him to Sparks, police said.

The older girl's family had reported her missing, and during the investigation police connected her to the Modesto teen, who also had been reported missing, the Bee reported.

The Modesto teen was linked to Wessel through Facebook, which tied the case together, the Bee reported.

Sparks police found Wessel at the Sparks Nugget motel, along with the two girls and a camera. Authorities said Wessel had “non-consensual sex” with the 14-year-old girl and there were images of her and other unidentified children on the camera.

The girls were taken to a juvenile facility, and Wessel was booked into Washoe County Jail on suspicion of kidnapping, sexual assault and production and possession of child pornography. A court date has not been set, according to jail records.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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