Liberty County girl returned home, grandfather charged with kidnapping

Edwards, Leroy Jr.

A Liberty County girl is back home with her parents after reportedly being taken without parental consent by her grandfather.

According to Capt. David Meyers, a spokesperson for the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, the grandfather – Leroy Edwards Jr., 65, of Plum Grove, is accused of taking 5-year-old Trinity Elyse Edwards out of Texas and into Louisiana on the evening of May 9. She was recovered the following morning by the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office in Alexandria, La., through a cooperative effort with the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office.

“The movement of his vehicle was captured by plate readers on the interstate,” said Capt. Meyers. “I was on the phone with Alexandria police and our interdiction sergeant was on the phone with Rapides Parish. I was giving them updates. They were able to get into the area where we thought Mr. Edwards might be and they located his vehicle.”

“The Rapides Parish sheriff’s deputies, along with the Alexandria Police Department, were able to locate the vehicle and initiate a traffic stop on the vehicle. Leroy Edwards Jr. was taken into custody without incident. At that time, Trinity Elyse Edwards was located sitting in the back seat of the car and appeared to be unharmed,” Meyers said.

Trinity was taken to the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office where she was later reunited with her father, aunt and uncle.

Leroy Edwards Jr. was booked into the Rapides Parish Jail for the active kidnapping warrant. He will be extradited back to Liberty County later this week.

“Investigators are still actively working on this case to determine the reasoning behind the grandpa taking Trinity,” Meyers said.

When asked why Edwards fled to Louisiana, Meyers said that is still a mystery.

“He had no relatives or connections to Louisiana, so we are still uncertain why he fled there with the child,” Meyers said.

Liberty County Sheriff Bobby Rader commended all the agencies involved in Trinity’s safe recovery.

“Due to the open line of communication with the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office and the Alexandria Police Department, the suspect was apprehended and the child recovered without injury,” Sheriff Rader said.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.

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