MANSFIELD, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – An 18-year-old man has been charged with kidnapping and is in custody in Tarrant County following a statewide Amber Alert Saturday night.
Mansfield police tracked down Clayton Phillips after the alert was issued for a 13-year-old girl from an area more than 500 miles away. Officers were able to rescue her and reunite her with her family.
Police on Sunday released body camera video of the arrest and showed just how quickly officers moved in on the suspect.
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“What we’re thinking about is the child. Our priority is to separate them, to protect her. So that’s what we did,” Sgt. Brian Raines said.
The video showed officers bringing Phillips to the ground and cuffing him. He stands accused of abducting the girl from Brownsville.
Police believe the two recently met online. When the alert was issued, authorities believed they were last seen in San Antonio. They were found early Sunday in Mansfield.
Police said the suspect may have family in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
“The whole shift, our dispatch, our officers… the city came alive to sit there and find that child,” Raines said.
Officers began searching this North Texas area based on a tip from the Brownsville Police Department and eventually found the suspect’s Kia Optima backed into a spot of grass off West Debbie Lane.
“Not a normal area for a vehicle to be in that time of night, and they also had some parking lights on that caught my attention,” Raines said.
Both teenagers appeared to be sleeping in the car when officers arrived. After police got Phillips into custody, they focused on the girl.
“She was startled. She was calm. Just listened to us and was completely fine, no injuries or anything like that,” Raines said. “I think of my own daughter, and I can’t imagine the family last night, what they went through.”