A 26-year-old man is behind bars after kidnapping an 11-year-old girl he met on Instagram.com. In text messages, Keith Green told the girl to pack her bags without her name or initials on them.
According to Crime Online, he told her they would have to “lay low” for six or seven years until she was of legal age.
He also told her he was “risking his life to be with her,” according to the police report.
The arrest report said Green intended to tell people the girl was his niece and that he gained custody of her after her parents died.
The text messages were deleted before police could read them, but the girl’s mother told police she viewed the messages.
Green used Instagram to groom the girl, and the warrant said deputies used a photo posted to the girl’s Instagram account to identify him.
The girl has been returned to her mother, according to WEAR TV.
Green will be extradited back to Orange County. He faces charges of kidnapping, interference with custody, and luring or enticing a child.
About 58% 0f children under age 16 have their own social media accounts, according to a recent study.
Parental advocacy groups are lobbying lawmakers to fine social media outlets that allow children to register accounts. Measures that social media outlets can take to restrict children on social media includes a button that users can press to alert them that a child has an account.