Heroic actions lead to wanted fugitive’s arrest, missing girl’s return

Mark Edwards in custody after eluding deputies for three days. (WDTN Photo)
Mark Edwards in custody after eluding deputies for three days. (WDTN Photo)

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio (WDTN)- It had been more than 72 hours since the 14-year-old’s mother had heard from her.

She went to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office late Friday night after she got  word that her missing daughter had been found.

“I just want to tell her that I love her.  NO questions.  I love ya.  Unconditional.  Infinity, to the moon and back is what she always told me.  I love you mom to the moon and back ,” she says.

Investigators say the girl ran away Tuesday night with this man 44-year-old Mark Edwards.

Edwards walked with his head down and wouldn’t answer any questions as he was taken to jail.

Sheriff Kelly says Edwards was taken into custody because of the heroic actions of the couple who were in this van.

He became choked up as he talked about how they spotted Edwards and the girl at the Clark Gas Station on Selma Road in Springfield and persuaded them to get in their van.

“I am very thankful that this wonderful person and his wife convinced him and her to just stop this running and wait for the police to arrive,” explains Sheriff Kelly.

He isn’t releasing the identity of the couple at this time.

But, other citizens also stepped in to help.

This 911 call was made by a man who also saw the pair at the same place.

“The people that you have on TV, that are on the news, the girl and the guy, they’re at the convenience mart on Selma Road and Johns Street right now,” says the 911 caller.

The 14-year-old’s friends and family are grateful for everyone who helped bring her home.

“I’m going to be happy.  I’m just happy she’s back,” comments Shayla Parslay.

Edwards is behind bars at the Clark County Jail.  He faces pending charges of fleeing and eluding, as well as interference with custody and violating a protection order.

The Sheriff says the 14-year-old girl will also face charges of inducing panic and complicity to interference.

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