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Police: Girl raped on tape is safe

  • Story Highlights
  • Stiles described as "survivalist type" who carries a weapon
  • Mother has cooperated with police, sheriff says
  • Girl on tape, now 7, found safe with family
  • Tape shows man sexually abusing the girl 4 years ago
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(CNN) -- A girl who was shown on a videotape being sexually assaulted in Las Vegas has been found and is safe, officials in Nye County, Nevada, said Friday.

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Chester Arthur Stiles, 37, is being sought as a suspect, police say.

"We have found the child, Madison. She's safe. The detectives say she is in good condition," Nye County Sheriff Tony De Meo said.

The girl, now 7, was shown in a sex video made four years ago, Detective David Boruchowitz said at a news conference Friday night.

She was found Friday with family in Las Vegas after thousands of tips poured in, thanks to an appeal by police to the news media to show the girl's picture. CNN and other news organizations did so until the child was found, when De Meo asked them to stop showing the picture.

"The mother has cooperated with us," De Meo said. "We believe that the mother was not aware of anything that went on with this young girl," he said. "It was very sad for her to find this out."

A former Las Vegas animal trainer, Chester Arthur Stiles, 37, a resident of Pahrump, Nevada, has been identified as a suspect and is being sought in the case, De Meo said. Pahrump is about 60 miles west of Las Vegas. Video Watch what's known about Stiles »

Stiles was a distant friend of the girl's family, De Meo said.

Someone close to Stiles has told investigators that Stiles is a "survivalist type" and always carries a weapon, Nye County District Attorney Bob Beckett said.

De Meo addressed Stiles directly: "Turn yourself in to your local law enforcement agency," he said. "Understand this: Law enforcement not only has a long arm, but a long memory. You will not be forgotten by members of this agency or any other law enforcement agency."

The FBI is also seeking Stiles on state charges of sexual assault and lewdness with a minor under the age of 14 in a separate matter, De Meo said.

Police, who had called Stiles a person of interest, began calling him a suspect late Friday.

There appeared to be physical similarities between Stiles and the man in the videotape, De Meo said.

"Nothing that I have seen in my career comes close to what this girl has gone through. Whoever this person is is a predator that, as far as I'm concerned, belongs in custody and, if successfully prosecuted, in jail for as long as the law allows," De Meo said earlier.

Detectives said the child showed little emotion during the rapes, indicating she may have been brutalized before.

Nevadan Darren Tuck recently gave police the videotape, saying he found it in the desert, De Meo said. Police said the tape was in his possession at least since May before he handed it over to authorities. He is being sought on a parole violation for failure to pay child support, but police -- who want to question him further -- have been unable to locate him.

Tuck, who also allegedly showed the tape to others before giving it to police, faces a possible 10-years-to-life sentence for exhibiting pornography and another one to six years for possession of child pornography, De Meo said.

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Harry Kuehn, Tuck's attorney, said this week on CNN's "Nancy Grace" that Tuck was "racked by indecision" about what to do with the tape once he realized what it was. Asked why, Kuehn said, "He's explained that to us, and at this point, we're not going to share that, because it goes to the defense of the matter."

"You have to consider what kind of concerns my client had; He's previously dealt with the sheriff's office in Nye County; it was previously unsatisfactory," the attorney said. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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