San Diego

Teen Kidnapped in Oklahoma, Held Captive in North Park Man's Apartment: Prosecutors

Federal prosecutors say a North Park man kidnapped a 16-year-old in Oklahoma and drove her all the way back to San Diego, where he held her captive for four days

A North Park man is facing federal kidnapping charges for allegedly abducting and repeatedly sexually assaulting a 16-year-old Oklahoma girl, the U.S. Attorney's Office said Friday.

Ramsey Manuel Cervantes, 22, is accused of kidnapping the victim at knifepoint from her home last week, restraining her with duct tape and driving her across state lines to his San Diego home.

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Prosecutors allege he kept her locked in his bedroom for four days before she was able to use Cervantes' cell phone on Wednesday to call her father and police.

The U.S. Attorney's Office says the two met over social media, with the girl believing Cervantes was 17 years old.

Cervantes drove to Oklahoma several times over the following six months to meet in person, but prosecutors allege he displayed an abusive streak with the girl, leading to a two-month period of little to no contact.

However, the pair "reconnected" about a week ago and Cervantes drove out to Oklahoma on June 15.

When the girl got into his vehicle and was told he was taking her back to San Diego, prosecutors allege she tried to get out, but Cervantes allegedly held a knife to her and threatened to kill her if she tried to leave.

On the way to San Diego, Cervantes allegedly sexually assaulted the girl repeatedly and forced her to drink vodka throughout the trip to keep her "in a constant state of heavy intoxication."

According to an FBI agent's declaration filed in court, Cervantes kept her in his bedroom and only allowed her out when his roommate was not home. Otherwise, he allegedly kept her mouth taped up and had music turned up loud in his room to conceal the girl's presence, the declaration states.

When he left the home on June 22, police and prosecutors allege he accidentally left his cell phone there, which allowed the girl to call for help. Officers responded and found the girl inside the residence and arrested Cervantes at another location, the declaration states.

"We are grateful that this case had a positive ending with the young victim back with her loved ones," said San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit. "This is a sad reminder to all of us to be careful who you trust online."

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