January 4, 2018 / 9:38 PM / in 6 months

Man charged with kidnapping two girls after their mother was killed

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - A man suspected of abducting two girls from an Austin, Texas-area home, where their mother was found dead, has been arrested in Colorado and charged with kidnapping, U.S. prosecutors said on Thursday.

Terry Miles, 44, suspected of abducting two young girls from Austin, Texas, and a person of interest in the death of their mother, Tonya Bates, arrested in Colorado, according to U.S. prosecutors, is shown in this undated handout photo provided by the Round Rock Police Department in Round Rock, Texas, U.S., January 4, 2018. Round Rock Police Department/Handout via REUTERS

A multi-state manhunt was launched after the girls’ mother Tonya Bates was found beaten to death over the weekend, police in the Austin suburb of Round Rock said.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Texas said that a federal complaint unsealed at a U.S. court in Austin charged Terry Miles, 44, a roommate of Bates, with kidnapping the girls, aged 7 and 14.

Round Rock police said Miles was a “person of interest” in Bates’ death and would be brought back to Texas.

Miles was driving Bates’ car and was arrested at a traffic stop in Colorado, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement. The children were found safe inside the car.

“Our whole goal was to bring these two sisters home safe,” Round Rock Police Chief Allen Banks told a news conference on Wednesday night.

The girls, Luluvioletta “Lulu” Bandera-Magret and Lilianais “Lily” Griffith, were being examined at a Colorado hospital and are expected to return soon to Texas, Banks said.

Reporting by Jon Herskovitz

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