ANOKA, Minn. (WCCO) — Charges were filed Wednesday for a man accused of taking an 8-year-old girl and sexually assaulting her.
John Heuer, 48 of Spring Lake Park, was charged with one count of kidnapping and one count of criminal sexual conduct in Anoka County District Court.
Investigators said Wednesday their probe into his past is far from over. Heuer is an over-the-road truck driver. They are now working to see if there are any additional victims out there.
For the past eight months, Heuer’s over-the-road job has taken him from the Twin Cities to Fargo and back. Investigators are focused on that stretch of road and all the points in between to see if there are other potential victims.
“Had the girl not had the fortitude to run out of his house and be discovered right there he could have been completely off our radar,” said Commander Paul Sommer with the Anoka County Sheriff’s Office.
Investigators credited the quick thinking of an 8-year-old girl for getting her away from the man who took her from her family.
The criminal complaint says Heuer lured the child from a laundromat in St. Paul and took her to his townhome in Spring Lake Park. There, he assaulted her.
She was able to get away and help investigators return to the complex.
Bryan Reynolds, a neighbor of Heuer, led investigators to Heuer’s home. His answers about posters and a patio umbrella the girl remembers seeing inside the home led them to the townhome 50 feet away from his front door, where they found Heuer hiding in the garage under his car.
“He does not admit to taking her he has some convoluted story of a deal he made with the child’s mother for some sort of prostitution and we don’t believe any of that is true,” said Sommer.
Investigators said Heuer claims to have paid the child’s mother $100 for sex with her. He said she agreed the sex could take place at his house.
Heuer’s current employer has offered up his 18-wheeler so investigators can continue their search for other victims.
Investigators said right now they have no concrete proof, but the evidence taken from inside Heuer’s home made them believe there could be other victims.
Heuer is scheduled to make his first appearance in Anoka County Court on Thursday.