Sunday, March 16, 2003

Man faces charges as two teens located


Girls apparently lured to Calif. after Web chats

By Kristina Goetz
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Police in Sunnyvale, Calif., have charged a man with luring two Northern Kentucky teens out West to serve as prostitutes.

Kevin Deshan Gibbs, 30, was charged with furnishing a child for lewd purposes, pimping and pandering, all three felonies, California officials said.

"He lured the teenagers out here for his purpose of using them as prostitutes," said Capt. Tim Carlyle of the Sunnyvale Police Department. "I don't know how far that got."

Jeanne Rohrig, 14, of Maysville and Whitney Irvin, 15, of Mount Olivet, reunited with their mothers at the Sunnyvale police station Saturday after disappearing last week. The four are expected to fly back to Kentucky today.

"The mothers were very happy, as you can imagine," Carlyle said.

"They were all anxious to get back home."

Maysville investigators say the girls left after receiving a package from a Fresno man they met over the Internet.

The two had established relationships with him and a man in San Francisco, authorities said.

Investigators say the Fresno man sent the girls a package containing false identification, $300 and bus tickets to California. Maysville Police Chief Van Ingram said detectives confirmed the two took a taxi from Maysville to the Greyhound bus station 65 miles away in Lexington on March 8.

The two teens reportedly told friends a man they met in an Internet chat room had sent them tickets to California.

Police first stopped a bus Jeanne and Whitney were thought to be on in Tucson, Ariz., but the teens were not on board.

It was old-fashioned detective work that found them, Carlyle said.

After examining the hard drive of one of the girls' computers, Maysville police were able to provide California officials with a Web page and a cell phone number.

Police contacted the phone company and were able to determine a general area from which a call from that phone was made. Carlyle said seven detectives were then sent out to scour hotels in that area. Gibbs had been registered at a Motel 6 but had already moved on by the time detectives arrived.

Then police checked a place called Vagabond Inn. A clerk told investigators that Gibbs had registered but left, so they waited for him to return. A short while later, he arrived at the motel with Whitney. Police found Jeanne in Fresno, Calif., at the bus terminal. Authorities say she was trying to get back home.

"A lot of young girls see California as some kind of attraction," Carlyle said. "In California, we get this kind of thing quite a bit, unfortunately. The good thing is everybody's OK."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.




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