He Spotted Missing Girl on Snapchat, Set a Trap

'I prayed so hard that God would help me find this girl'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 30, 2018 8:20 AM CDT
This 2017 photo shows the Snapchat app.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

(Newser) – All her family knew was that 15-year-old Amber Austin had disappeared from her grandmother's house in northwest Georgia. Family friend Dakota Moss had a bit more information, and what he did with it has earned him the title of hero. After seeing Facebook posts from family members asking about the teen, who was reported missing Sunday, Moss turned to Snapchat and on Wednesday found a photo of Amber and a male, later identified by police as 34-year-old Dayton Koop of Dalton, per 11Alive. Moss, 27, then set a trap. In a Facebook message to Koop, Moss offered the pair a place to hide out, Murray County Sheriff Eric White tells ABC News. (11Alive reports Moss pretended to be a woman to lure Koop.) Koop took the bait, arriving at Moss' place with Amber in tow, White says.

Sending his roommate out to meet the suspect, Moss then called 911. Responding sheriff's deputies found Amber hiding in Koop's vehicle, covered in clothes, White says. Though the sheriff says Amber wasn't being held against her will, Moss says "she seemed real scared" and "had tears in her eyes." He adds he only did what any father would do. "I prayed so hard that God would help me find this girl, and it all worked out for the best." Koop—who was accused of raping a woman in her home in 2011, but never charged, per Fox News—now faces charges of possession of methamphetamine, contributing to the unruliness of a minor, interference of child custody, and obstruction, and is held on a $15,000 bond, according to White. Amber was turned over to authorities, per ABC. (Read more missing person stories.)

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