Suspect in kidnapping of 9-year-old girl from NY campground indicted on rape, kidnapping charges

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Friday, November 17, 2023
Suspect indicted for kidnapping and rape of girl from NY campground
Craig Ross, Jr. is facing sex crime charges and first degree kidnapping for allegedly abducting a 9-year-old girl from a NY campground.

NEW YORK -- Craig Ross Jr., the man accused of kidnapping a 9-year-old girl riding her bike in Moreau Lake State Park in September, has been indicted on rape and kidnapping charges.

Craig N. Ross Jr., 47, was charged with multiple counts of predatory sexual assault against a child in addition to first-degree kidnapping during an indictment on Friday in Saratoga County Court, according to the Albany Times Union.

The charges carry a maximum penalty of 25 years to life in prison.

Authorities arrested Ross on Oct. 2, after a two-day manhunt, which led authorities to a camper van in Ballston Spa, New York, where Ross was living on his mother's property.

The victim was found in a cupboard in his camper van and in good health, police said.

Search teams were led to the property after discovering a ransom note in the mailbox of the kidnapped girl's home on which they discovered Ross' fingerprints. His fingerprints were in the system due to a prior arrest for a DWI in 1999.

The girl's aunt, on behalf of the family, expressed their gratitude to authorities when the girl was rescued.

"We are thrilled that she is home and we understand that the outcome is not what every family gets. A huge thank you to the FBI, the New York State Police, all of the agencies that were mobilized all of the families, friends, volunteers," the family statement read.

The child, from Greenfield, New York, disappeared while on a bike ride at the campground where she was staying with family and friends, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said at a news conference.

Hochul said the fourth-grade girl was doing one last lap around the park alone when she went missing.

An Amber Alert was issued for the missing child that same evening and an intense search involving up to 400 local, state and federal law enforcement officers and firefighters was conducted at the sprawling park.

The day after his arrest Ross appeared in Milton Town Court where he was charged in relation to the kidnapping.

Friday marked his first appearance in Saratoga County Court.


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