13-Year-Old Missing Ohio Girl Found Alive

Sarah Maynard, one of four gone missing, found alive and well today.

November 14, 2010, 1:39 PM

Nov. 14, 2010— -- The 13-year-old girl in a group of four people who went missing in Ohio last week was found alive today, but she had been held against her will, police said.

A SWAT team found Sarah Maynard bound and gagged in the basement of a home in Mount Vernon, Ohio, Knox County Sheriff David Barber said at a news conference today.

"We did not want to give him time to harm her, so we did use a tactical team," Barber said.

The man who lives in the house, 30-year-old Matthew Hoffman was arrested and charged with kidnapping, Barber said. More charges are possible, he said.

"We were hopeful of finding more than one" of the missing people in Hoffman's house, Barber said. "But the information we had was that Sarah would definitely be found in that house."

The girl had been "under the control" of Hoffman since Wednesday, when she and her brother were last seen at school, Barber said.

Investigators have determined that Hoffman is not the ex-boyfriend of either Herrmann or Sprang, but they are trying to determine whether there is another connection, the sheriff said.

"At this time, whether he's connected to the family or whether he connected himself to the family ... a lot of that remains to be seen as the investigation continues," Barber said.

He said that investigators have talked to Maynard, but declined to release any details they might have learned from her because the investigation is ongoing.

Maynard was taken to Knox Community Hospital for evaluation, the sheriff said.

"She was being held against her will," Barber said. "She is in good in good condition."

Neighbors described Hoffman as "weird" and "very different."

Dawna Davis, 35, who lives next door to him, told The Associated Press that she told her children to stay indoors when he was out.

"He would sit and listen to us up in a tree. He had a hammock and he would sit there and listen to us," she said. "He was just different. He was very different."

Maynard had disappeared along with her brother, her mother and a friend of her mother on Thursday from Howard, a small town in central Ohio.

Police reported Saturday that an "unusual amount of blood" was found in the home of Maynard's mother, Tina Herrmann, after the four vanished.

"The one thing I can say about it is that it's an unusual amount," Barber said Saturday. "It isn't from someone stubbing their toe or cutting their finger, you know, or peeling an apple or something like that."

Also still missing are Herrmann's 10-year-old son Kody Maynard, and a friend, Stephanie Sprang, 41.

Ohio police are searching for the remaining three missing people, whose alarming disappearance prompted an Ohio college to go on lockdown Thursday night as police warned of a "potentially dangerous person in the vicinity."

Herrmann, 32, was reported missing by her boyfriend on Wednesday.

When she did not show up for work at a Dairy Queen Thursday, her co-workers went to her home looking for her and soon after called the police, Barber said.

"Thursday, Tina did not show up at work; she works at the local Dairy Queen in Mount Vernon," he said. "A co-worker came out and met deputies out here. Her truck was gone."

"When [Herrmann's co-worker] went in, she saw some things out of place," the sheriff said.

A search of the home revealed it to be in "unusual condition" for a place where woman and children lived, Barber said, but did not specify what that meant.

Herrmann's ex-husband Larry Maynard told WBNS-TV that a co-worker went inside the home and saw blood and things out of place before calling police.

Barber and other sheriff's deputies would not comment to ABCNews.com.

Herrmann's boyfriend Greg Borders told the Columbus Dispatch that the couple lived together but were in process of breaking up. He last said he last heard from her Wednesday via text message.

"We were both going to go our separate ways," he told the paper. "We were fairly civil, as civil as you can be living in the same house when you're broken up."

A spokesman for the FBI field office in Cincinnati said the agency was aware of the incident, but could not comment on whether it would cooperate in the investigation.

Spring's car was found outside Herrmann's home Thursday. Herrmann's pickup truck was at the home Wednesday when the boyfriend reported her missing, Barber said, but it was found abandoned Thursday night at nearby Kenyon College.

Police alerted the college that they believed the car may have been left there by a person involved in the group's disappearance.

The college sent out an e-mail to students Thursday night, alerting them that "local law enforcement advised of a potentially dangerous person in the vicinity."

A spokesman for the college, however, told The Associated Press that the lockdown was purely precautionary and administrators did not believe students were ever at risk. The lockdown was lifted at 7 o'clock this morning.

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