SEYMOUR, Ind. (WDRB) -- It's a crime that has haunted the community of Seymour, Ind., for almost two decades.
Now, the FBI has arrested Charles Hollin, accused of kidnapping and brutally assaulting a little girl in 1999.
Authorities say the victim was walking out of what was then the Girls, Inc. Club, when Hollis took her at knifepoint, drove her to a remote area, raped her, and left her naked on the side of the road.
By the time DNA evidence linked Hollin to the crime, he had fled.
Authorities say they tracked leads across the United States and six countries.
“This was not a cold case. This was an active fugitive investigation,” said Greg Massa, FBI Special Agent in Charge of Criminal Investigations.
The break came when Hollin stole the identity of Andrew Hall, a boy who was killed in a car wreck in 1975.
When Hollin applied for a passport, the FBI used facial recognition technology to track him to Salem, Ore.
“[The technology] was able to compare a photograph of Mr. Hollin and a photograph from the passport of Andrew David Hall, knowing Mr. Hall was deceased, and they made an identification of Mr. Hollin,” said Josh Minkler, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana.
When asked why the FBI didn't use facial recognition to track Hollin down sooner, Minkler explained that some states -- including Oregon -- do not submit driver's license photos to the federal data recognition database. When Hollin applied for a passport, his image was submitted to the database.
The FBI arrested Hollin Tuesday night at a WalMart Supercenter where he worked. The now 61-year-old did not resist.
“He was actually pretty defeated at that time. It was very uneventful. He identified himself immediately, and admitted who he was,” said FBI agent Cory Grass, who flew to Oregon for the arrest.
The arrest comes as a relief for the entire community.
“Obviously everybody was upset about it, and everybody was put on guard to keep an eye on their kids,” said Jackson Co. Sheriff William Abbott. “It can happen here.”
Authorities say the arrest is a step toward closure for the victim.
“She's obviously 16 years older now, and in a different part of her life. But her father said she's well adjusted, she's doing well, and she felt relieved when she found out about this arrest,” said Jackson County Prosecutor AmyMarie Travis.
Authorities are now in the process of returning Hollin to Indiana where he faces federal charges of Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution and Identity Theft.
The state has charged him with two counts of confinement, which is a Class B felony; and three counts of child molesting, which is a Class A felony.
Minkler says he has a message for other fugitives who have committed crimes against Indiana’s children.
“We will hunt you down, we will find you, and we will bring you to court to face justice,” he said.
Minkler says Hollin will be taken to federal court in New Albany where an identity hearing will be held. After that, he will be transferred back to the authority of Jackson County. He expects that process to take about 2-3 weeks.
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