LAWRENCE, Mich. (WOOD) - An 18-year-old male is facing charges after allegedly harboring two teenage girls who ran away.
Orlando Jimenez was arrested Thursday in Oceana County on a two-count warrant of harboring runaways. He was arraigned Friday in a Van Buren County courtroom, with a bond set at $1,000. Harboring a runaway is a misdemeanor charge that carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail, and/or a $500 fine.
The investigation began when Jerica Springer, 13, and Myra Rodriguez, 14, both from Lawrence, went to class at Lawrence High School in Van Buren County Wednesday morning and then left an hour after arriving, police said.
Police later learned the girls met Jimenez, who is Myra’s boyfriend, at a nearby park and drove away together.
The Van Buren County Sheriff's Department sent out a news release about the situation, stated the girls went willingly with Jimenez but their whereabouts were unknown.
The girls contacted their families and told them they were not in danger, but would not give any information about their location or who they were with at the time, police said.
The Van Buren County Sheriff’s Department later learned through tips that the girls might be in the Muskegon County/Oceana County area.
A farm owner notified authorities after seeing the girls around 8:30 a.m. Thursday at a migrant camp in the 4000 block of S. 28th Avenue in Shelby in Oceana County. The girls were put in protective custody until they were reunited with their parents later in the day.
The girls were in good health and cooperating with police.
Jimenez is a Grand Rapids resident and originally from Florida.
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