MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 23-year-old man was charged Thursday in a case where two teenage girls went missing from their homes in Andover and were found a day later at a home in Burnsville.
The two girls, both 13 years old, had allegedly been texting and messaging through social media with a man identified as Casey Lee Chinn. Police issued a release asking for the public’s help to find the girls after they went missing Monday night around 7:45 p.m.
According to a criminal complaint, the two girls, who are neighbors, told their parents they were at each other’s homes but the parents eventually checked and found this was not the case.
After searching for them, a friend of the girls revealed they had been talking to a man through social media for about a week. Police checked messages on the girls’ phones, computers and other electronic devices and found a lengthy conversation with a man later identified as Chinn that dated back to Sept. 14.
Investigators learned the girls met Chinn on a website called OMEGLE, where they started chatting and video chatting.
The communication between the girls and Chinn identified both girls as being 13 years old, according to the complaint.
Investigators say the messages were sexually explicit, discussed meeting for sex and referenced Chinn’s concerns of being caught by police and going to jail. They say Chinn specifically asked for nude pictures of the girls.
Authorities responded to Chinn’s home on the 2400 block of Hayes Court in Burnsville on Sept. 30, where Chinn initially denied having the girls in his home. After a search of the home, police found the two girls huddled behind a couch in the basement, crying and upset, according to the charges.
Chinn was placed under arrest and taken into custody.
In an interview with police, Chinn admitted he knew the girls were 13 and said he believed they were unhappy at their homes and wanted to leave, so he offered to pick them up. He brought them to his home where he told them they had to stay in the basement, as he lived with his parents. Chinn then sexually assaulted both girls.
“This is a very serious crime,” says Anoka County Attorney, Tony Palumbo. “This is a crime all of us fear, all parents fear. Having your young and naive child being lured by an adult male.”
Chinn coached with Burnsville’s Wildfire U-16 girls softball and was a part-time girls’ volleyball coach at Christo Rey High School in Minneapolis, where he was recently suspended. Neither would comment for this story.
He now faces several charges including two counts each of criminal sexual conduct, kidnapping and solicitation of a child to engage in sexual conduct.
His bail was set at $300,000 with the conditions that he not contact the victims, has no unsupervised contact with minor girls and cannot participate in a coaching capacity.
Chinn’s next court date is set for Oct. 30.
Prosecutors expect, if convicted, they will push for maximum sentencing of Chinn, based on the horrendous nature of the alleged crimes.