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Florence family reunited after teen girl rescued from ‘aggressive’ kidnapping, sex assault suspect

The teen was rescued from a home in Texas on Saturday.

Posted: Apr 19, 2021 4:34 PM
Updated: Apr 19, 2021 8:56 PM

An Alabama teen who was kidnapped is on her way back home to Florence after she was found in Tyler, Texas.

The girl was reported missing Thursday. She was rescued on Saturday.

Daniel Skipworth is charged in Texas with kidnapping, trafficking, resisting arrest and aggravated sexual assault of a child. Because of the charges, WAAY 31 will not be naming the victim nor her family members to protect her privacy.

Right now, Florence police are taking an in-depth look at the case to see what they can charge Skipworth with in Alabama. The victim and her family are making the nine-hour drive back from Tyler, Texas, and her grandmother said this has been a nightmare for the family.

"There is not even a word invented to tell you how happy we are to have her. We can overcome anything as long as she came home to us breathing," said the victim's grandmother.

The victim's grandmother said the days of the unknown were a living nightmare.

"I want every parent out there to realize your child doesn't have to do anything for someone to decide they want them, but you can check their media and the games they are playing and don't let them go anywhere unless they are in pairs," said the grandmother.

The FBI is the lead on the case. The victim was taken from Florence and driven to Tyler, Texas, by Daniel Skipworth, authorities say. They say she was held at his home for a few days.

Tyler police got a tip through the FBI and were asked to assist in going by his home.

"We told him why we were there and asked him about the 13-year-old girl, and he immediately became aggressive and confrontational toward our officers. He actually tried to bite one of our officers, but another one was able to pull him away before he did that," said Tyler, Texas Public Information Officer Andy Erbaugh.

Erbaugh said that's when the girl came out of a room to them. They took care of her at the police station until her family could get there.

"I can never thank everyone enough for every little thing that they did," said the grandmother.

WAAY 31 asked Tyler police if they had many run-ins with Skipworth or if he had a rap sheet. They said to their knowledge, he had a clean record until now.

He's being held in Texas on a $560,000 bond. He could face federal and local charges in Alabama.

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