NASHVILLE, TN (WKRN) – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation confirms the man accused of kidnapping a 4-year-old Florida girl has been taken into custody outside Baptist East Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee.
Rebecca Lewis, who was found safe, and the man accused of kidnapping her, 31-year-old West Wild Hogs, were last seen in Nashville at 2:30 a.m. at Daily’s convenience store at Antioch Pike and Interstate 24.
Authorities used a bank card connected to Hogs and surveillance video to verify the sighting.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd of Florida had a message for the suspected kidnapper, who legally changed his name to West Wild Hogs from Matthew Clark Pybus: “Don’t you hurt that baby.”
Rebecca was last seen by family at around 9 a.m. Saturday, when her 16-year-old sister saw her sleeping in her bed at the Lazy Dazy Retreat RV/Mobile Home on Highway 98 North in Florida.
The sister fell back asleep and when she woke up at 9:45 a.m., the little girl was gone.
Investigators say she is with Hogs, who is a long-time family friend but had not seen the family in over two years.
He showed up on Friday to Rebecca’s grandmother’s house in Polk City.
He was asked to leave the family’s home over two years ago after pulling a gun on the family, according to Sheriff Judd.
Judd said Hogs suffers from depression and bipolar disorder.
TENNESSEE AMBER ALERT
The AMBER Alert was expanded through most of the southeast, including Florida, Georgia, Tennessee and Kentucky, for Lewis.
The TBI was asked by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement on Sunday to issue an alert. Since the TBI felt there was no specific information the child was in Tennessee at the time they did not able to issue an AMBER Alert.
They did, however, issue a Be-On-The-Lookout notice for law enforcement.
Only after the two were spotted in Nashville and that sighting confirmed did the TBI expand the AMBER Alert to all of Tennessee.
We are confident we have done everything possible – within the bounds of our established policies and practices – to assist authorities in Florida, given the information available to us throughout this event. We remain in constant contact with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and stand prepared to assist in any way as this ongoing search effort continues,” said the TBI in a statement Monday.
Video showed the pair at a McDonald’s on Saturday, Oct. 8 just after the girl went missing. Click here to view the video on your mobile device.
After the AMBER Alert was issued in Florida, authorities saw West Hogs and Rebecca at a gas station in Forsythe, Georgia, just off of I-75 around 6:30 p.m. Saturday.
Surveillance images showed the two together and Rebecca appeared to be in good health.
The two were then believed to be spotted in the area of Cove Lake State Park, in Campbell County, Tennessee, which is near Interstate 75 close to Tennessee/Kentucky border.
At that time the TBI expanded Florida’s AMBER Alert to East Tennessee.
The Polk County Sheriff’s Office says sometime on Sunday between 10 to 11 p.m. eastern, a park ranger reported seeing a man and child matching Hogs and Rebecca’s description at the park.