A 20-year-old Loganville man was arrested and charged with child molestation early Tuesday morning.
Officers from the Covington Police Department were called to a home in the Settlers Grove neighborhood just after 3 a.m. Tuesday. Once there, they met with the mother of a 12-year-old girl who said she had last seen her daughter around 11 p.m. before heading to bed. When the child's father woke up around 2:30 a.m. to check on the children, he noticed his daughter was not downstairs with the rest of them. Upon checking her bedroom, he found her bed empty with two pillows stuffed under the sheets.
The father reportedly told officers that he had searched the home and found a downstairs window open. He told his wife to call 911 before heading outside to search the yard for his missing daughter.
While officers were canvassing the area, looking for the missing girl, her father called out to them that his daughter had returned. She was sweating and breathing hard as if she had been running, according to reports.
After speaking with officers for roughly 10 minutes, the girl reported told them she was down the street in a silver truck that belonged to 20-year-old Anthony Tyler Griffin. She said that they had just been talking and that she had been talking on the phone with him for the last few weeks after meeting the man on a family camping trip a month earlier.
She also told officers that she knew her dad would wake up to check on her in the night, so she put the pillows in her bed hoping that he would think she was under the covers asleep. She also told officers that she and Griffin had not done anything sexual at all, but had just talked for about 20 minutes before she noticed the police cars and came running home.
The girl's father was not convinced nothing sexual happened and elected to take his daughter to the emergency room. Following that trip, Griffin was located, interviewed and jailed after being charged with child molestation.