Jose Paulino Pascual-Reyes arrested after 12-year-old Alabama girl chews through restrictions to escape, police say

A 12-year-old girl from Alabama is being hailed as a “hero” after she escaped from her alleged kidnapper’s home, where two decomposing bodies were later found, authorities said Tuesday. Jose Paulino Pascual-Reyes, 37, has been arrested and charged with first-degree kidnapping in connection with the girl’s case. In connection with the bodies, not yet identified, Pascual-Reyes has also been charged with three counts of capital murder and two counts of misuse of a corpse. He was arrested in Auburn less than 24 hours after the 12-year-old was found by a passing motorist while walking along a stretch of highway in Alabama, the Tallapoosa sheriff said. The girl was tied to a bedpost at one point during her imprisonment and drugged with alcohol, Sheriff Jimmy Abbett said. “We have given her medical attention,” he added. “She’s safe now. We’d like to keep her that way.” Abbett declined to identify the girl or say whether she knew her alleged kidnapper, saying only that the investigation remained “fluent” and “changing.”

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