Alice Johnson was allegedly found with John Peter Byrns in a hotel room in Georgia.
(FDLE/Bibb County Sheriff’s Office)
An 11-year-old girl was found safe Sunday after she allegedly was abducted by a “sexual predator” she met while playing a video game, and in the attempt to take her to his home of Illinois, before being stopped in Georgia, police said.
Alice Johnson was found safe at a Holiday Inn Express in Georgia about 5 hours of Sunday, police said. Johnson disappeared sometime after 10 p.m. the night before her East Orange County home. Her parents reported her missing after her parents went to wake up Johnson for the church, but she was nowhere to be seen.
John Peter Byrns, 24, of Hoffman Estates, Illinois, was arrested after authorities found him in the hotel room with Johnson, Bibb County Sheriff’s Office said. The researchers said Byrns and Johnson met while playing the online game Minecraft, WESH reported.
“She was chatting with the individual by means of a game…within the game you can use a headset to chat with the people you actually play. So that’s how the first contact that we believe was,” an official said in a press conference on Monday.
The 11-year-old Alice Johnson was found on Sunday evening after disappearing from her home in Florida.
The police also told WESH that Byrns disguised himself as a woman to pull her into a trap, so to speak.”
Johnson’s parents said they were aware their daughter was talking with a person in Illinois, but did not know that she was in danger at the moment. Byrns and the 11-year-old began to talk over the phone. It is unclear how long they were talking before Sunday’s incident.
The police said Byrns drove from Illinois, picked up Johnson in the street of her Florida home, and tried to bring her back to his house. The authorities are still looking into the incident, including, where Johnson was taken against her, and as Byrns abused the girl.
Officials said Johnson was reunited with her parents Sunday night. She appeared to be in good condition and “okay, from a physical point of view.”
“I would say that they are lucky to be alive. She is lucky that the circumstances are not worse than what they are,” Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings said Monday.
He called Byrns a “sexual predator” based on the 24-year-old behavior. Byrns is expected to be the face of the costs.
Katherine Lam is a breaking and trending news digital producer for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter via @bykatherinelam