A Minnesota man who traveled to Tampa to pick up a 14-year-old girl he met online got as far as Tallahassee with her before authorities found and arrested him Monday, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said.
Matthew William McLean, 25, of Minneapolis was caught in Tallahassee after he and the girl boarded a bus in Tampa bound for Texas, with plans to travel to Mexico, the Sheriff's Office said. He is charged with interference with custody and traveling to meet a minor. Authorities say McLean communicated with the victim online for more than six months using Facebook, Skype and the messaging application Kik, He met the girl near her home in Tampa sometime between Saturday night and Sunday morning and then bought two tickets to Brownsville, Texas, at a Greyhound bus station in Tampa, the Sheriff's Office said. The girl's parents discovered her missing Sunday.
McLean and the victim were found at 1:20 a.m. Monday at a Greyhound bus terminal in Tallahassee. McLean was taken into custody on an outstanding warrant for absconding from probation on what the Sheriff's Office described as a sexual conduct charge from Minnesota. The girl was reunited with her parents. McLean is a registered sex offender in Minneapolis, the Sheriff's Office said. The FBI is assisting with the investigation.