by: Tim Karan, TribLIVE Updated:
A 41-year-old Kittanning man was arrested on Wednesday for allegedly harboring a 15-year-old Bethel Township girl reported missing on Tuesday.
Court documents allege Gregory Alan Shaffer, of 415 Robinson St., reportedly took the girl to an apartment in Shelocta, Indiana County, and lied to authorities on two occasions when asked about her whereabouts.
Police found the girl the next day with Shaffer in a room at the old Shelocta Motel.
The Leader Times does not reveal the names of juveniles who are involved with crimes.
The incident began at approximately 6:30 a.m. Tuesday when the girl left her home for school. According to the criminal complaint, she had instead planned to run away and meet Shaffer. Another man allegedly picked up the girl outside the Bethel Township Municipal Building, then drove the pair to the former motel which has been converted into apartments.
The girl's mother reported her missing at 4:30 p.m. after she didn't return home from school. Around 5:50 p.m., police interviewed Shaffer at his home in Kittanning and he said he hadn't seen the girl in “a couple weeks,” documents show.
Troopers later spoke with a woman who said Shaffer had another residence in Indiana County and that Shaffer told her the week before that he was “thinking of kidnapping” the girl, according to the documents.
Police say they again interviewed Shaffer at his home, but he insisted he didn't know where the girl was and denied having another residence.
The following afternoon, the man who drove the pair to the motel told police where Shaffer and the girl had been staying since Tuesday morning, police said. When investigators arrived at the apartment, Shaffer opened the door and a trooper said the girl tried to run into the bathroom, according to the affidavit.
The girl was taken to the state police station in East Franklin, where she was interviewed and placed into the custody of Armstrong County Children, Youth and Family Services.
Shaffer was arrested and placed in Armstrong County Jail by District Judge James Andring in lieu of $20,000 bond on charges of concealing the whereabouts of a child, interference with the custody of a child and corruption of minors.
Channel 11's news exchange partners at TribLIVE wrote this article.
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