A pair of 13-year-old girls missing overnight from Andover were found Tuesday in the home of a man police immediately jailed on suspicion of sex crimes.
Anoka County authorities said the girls, who are neighbors, met Casey Lee Chinn, 23, online and that he picked them up near their homes Monday night.
Using clues gleaned from the girls’ electronic devices, police tracked them to Chinn’s Burnsville home, where they had apparently spent the night.
He was being held without bail Tuesday night in the Anoka County jail on suspicion of soliciting sex and two counts of third-degree sexual assault. Investigative reports will be presented to county prosecutors Wednesday for possible charges, said Anoka County Sheriff’s Cmdr. Paul Sommer.
Chinn has worked at several metro area schools and organizations as a girls’ softball and volleyball coach, according to the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office and school officials.
On Tuesday, officials at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Minneapolis placed Chinn on leave from the part-time job as volleyball coach he began in September.
“We are cooperating fully with the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office and are encouraging our school families to discuss any interactions that their children may have had with Mr. Chinn and to come forward with any concerns,” the school said Tuesday.
Chinn also has been involved in girls’ softball in Burnsville and worked as a volunteer junior varsity baseball coach at East Ridge High in Woodbury for the 2014 season.
“We are extremely concerned to hear of this issue from our law enforcement community and will act swiftly and accordingly to ensure the safety and well-being of our students,” said South Washington schools superintendent Keith Jacobus.
The girls were last seen near 159th Avenue and Swallow in Andover Monday night. Sommer said investigators believe Chinn picked up the girls near their homes and took them to his house on Hayes Avenue.
“We’re really certain he picked them up about 7:30 [Monday] night, and had them there” until police found them about 11 a.m. Tuesday, he said.
“They seem to have gone willingly with him,” Sommer said. Authorities continue to investigate what happened in the home.
The girls had been communicating with men using social media in a number of applications, including texting and video chat apps, Sommer said, adding that the case serves as a reminder that parents should try to be aware of their child’s web presence beyond just their social media profiles.
“There are numerous ways that a predator could contact your child,” he said. “The scope of influence that people have over your kids is well beyond their physical presence now.”