TribLIVE

| USWorld

 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Accused New York couple looked to victimize more children, sheriff says

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

By USA Today
Saturday, Aug. 16, 2014, 7:45 p.m.
 

Two Amish girls were sexually assaulted during the 24 hours they were held captive, law enforcement officials told the Los Angeles Times on Saturday.

St. Lawrence County District Attorney Mary Rain said the victims, a 12-year-old and her 6-year-old sister, suffered the assaults after they were abducted from a roadside farm stand near their family's home in Huevelton, N.Y.

Although the girls' names were published as authorities fanned out and searched for the missing youngsters, news organizations are now withholding their identities because of the sexual assault allegations.

A Hermon, N.Y., couple arrested on Friday night in the kidnappings might have planned to abduct more children, Sheriff Kevin Wells said.

“There was the definite potential” of additional victims and that more charges might be filed against Stephen Howells, 39, and Nicole Vaisey, 25, Wells said.

The two girls walked out to their family's roadside vegetable stand on Wednesday night because they thought Howell and Vaisey were customers, authorities said. The couple snatched the girls and dropped them off late Thursday in Richville, N.Y., where they approached a stranger's home, who recognized them from their Amish dress and news reports and called police.

The 12-year-old was able to point police to the couple's home, about 13 miles from where the girls live, and Howell and Vaisey agreed to be interviewed on Friday night.

The sheriff said Howells and Vaisey did not necessarily grab the girls because they were Amish.

Rain declined to say whether one or both suspects were believed to have been involved in the assault.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. Clinton focuses on economy’s future in speech
  2. Mail carrier credited with saving life of Nebraska octogenarian
  3. Hope dims for Fla. teens lost at sea
  4. Cruz chided over remarks in prelude to Ex-Im Bank vote
  5. National Security Agency to stop looking at old telephone records
  6. Artists’ community in Calif. reeling after girl’s death; teen boy arrested
  7. Ohio cop indicted on murder charge in traffic-stop shooting