Police: Missing 6-year-old in Wilmington found chained to tree, suspect in custody


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Deputies say the missing 6-year-old girl from Wilmington, NC has been found alive, according to WECT.

The New Hanover Sheriff`s Office in NC issued an Amber Alert for the missing child, Stefanny Lenneth Lopez-Castro on Wednesday night.

Officials are awaiting an update on her condition after they found her chained to a tree in a wooded area.

A witness said he was flagged down Thursday morning while driving to work. Officials said he gave them a battery-operated saw they they cute the girl free.

According to WECT, Douglas Edwards, 46, of Wilmington is in custody. According to officials, he is a registered sex offender. Edwards, who was picked up in New Hanover County Thursday morning, has been charged with first-degree kidnapping.

A Douglas Edwards is listed in the sex offender registry for a 1996 conviction for indecent liberty of a minor and first-degree sex offense involving a 6-year-old in October 1994, WECT reported.

Stefanny is a 6-year-old white Hispanic female, approximately 4’0″ tall, weighing 39 pounds. Authorities say she has black hair, and brown eyes.

She was last seen wearing a white short sleeve shirt, light pink shorts with white polka dots, and black flip-flops. Stefanny has pierced ears with Cubic Zirconia earrings 

There is allegedly one unknown abductor. The person is described as white man. The possible abductor was seen wearing a black short sleeve shirt with a dragon on it. He had long black pants and boots. He also had a black helmet. He spoke English and is possibly white or Hispanic.

The suspect vehicle is a black moped.

Stefanny was last seen at 5140 Carolina Beach Rd., Lot 80 in Wilmington, NC traveling southbound on Carolina Beach Road. 

If you have any information regarding this abduction, you’re asked to call the New Hanover Sheriff`s Office immediately at (910) 798-4260, (910) 465-1748 or call 911 or *HP.

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