Man faces multiple charges in case of missing Tennessee teen

Elijah Smith (Courtesy: Putnam County Sheriff's Office)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A 28-year-old Nashville man is facing multiple charges after a 14-year-old Cookeville girl was reported missing.

Elijah Smith, 28, was taken into custody Sunday by the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office in Baxter, Tennessee.

Authorities said they received a call around 5 p.m. about a speeding car that crashed into a ditch at Old Gainesboro Highway and Cumby Road. The car had the same description as the vehicle named in an Amber Alert issued last Friday.

Upon arriving, deputies found a man, later identified as Smith, unloading items from the car and immediately took him into custody.

According to a press release, open containers of alcohol were found inside the car and Smith reportedly smelled of alcohol.

A perimeter was established by law enforcement from the Cookeville Police Department, Tennessee Highway Patrol, and Putnam County Sheriff’s Office.

The 14-year-old endangered missing girl was found nearby, unharmed and lying in the grass. She is now safe at home with her parents.

Smith faces charges in Putnam County of DUI, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, filing a false report, open container, and failing to exercise due course. His bond was set at $7,000 for these charges.

He also faces charges of statutory rape issued by the Cookeville Police Department. His bond was set at $30,000 for that charge.

The 28-year-old Nashville man was booked into Putnam County jail. The investigation is ongoing.

Copyright 2015 WKRN. All rights reserved.

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