A clue about a talking bird led to a suspect in the alleged brutal kidnapping of a five-year-old girl.
On Friday, Philadelphia police arrested nineteen-year-old Christina Regusters in connection with the January 14 abduction. She has been formally charged with several crimes relating to the incident, including rape.
According to BBC News, the five-year-old was taken from her Philadelphia elementary school by a women who claimed to have prior authorization. Witnesses recalled the woman being young and wearing a veil across her face.
The child was found by a pedestrian at a nearby park 18 hours after she was allegedly abducted. She was discovered in freezing temperatures while barely clothed and crying.
She told police that she had been “stolen“, and taken to a house near the school. She was held for hours before being released at the park overnight.
The Associated Press reports that police took the girl through the neighborhood as they investigated where she might have been held.
A lawyer for the girl’s mother, Tom Kline, claims that the girl’s memories of a talking bird at the location eventually led investigators to the residence:
“This brave, innocent precious little girl was instrumental in leading police literally to the door of the crime. She told them that there was a bird in the house. The bird became one of the many focal points of the investigation.”
Christina Regusters has been charged with kidnapping, rape of a child, conspiracy, aggravated assault and other offenses. Police also questioned three other individuals at the residence who were later released.
The talking bird who led to the suspect was reportedly removed from the house during a police search on Thursday night.