ROSEBURG, Ore. – Three girls reported missing in Washington state have been found in Oregon with a California fugitive, who is now facing human trafficking charges, police said.
Police officers made the discovery early Thursday morning while observing a suspicious vehicle parked in the vicinity of the Roseburg Regional Airport in Oregon’s Douglas County. The officers stopped the rental car and detained its occupants. As a result, they made contact with a man and three girls inside, according to a press release from the Roseburg Police Department.
Consequently, officers soon discovered the man identified as Maurice Pierre Hurth, 41, of Suisun City, Calif., had multiple warrants out for his arrest from his home state, msn.com reported. The report did not provide the nature of the warrants. Hurth was arrested after a “brief resistance,” police said.
As the preliminary investigation continued, officers discovered that all three girls were recently reported missing from a youth group home in the Seattle area.
The missing girls were all under 18. As a result, they were taken into protective custody and transferred to the Douglas County Juvenile Shelter in Roseburg, Ore.
Evidence gathered by police eventually led to Hurth being charged with three counts each of trafficking in persons, compelling prostitution and first-degree custodial interference, as well as one count of encouraging child sex abuse in the first degree, according to msn.com.
Hurth is being held at the Douglas County Correction Center in Roseburg, Ore. While he’s been booked in jail, the investigation continues, police said.