Cairnbrook kidnapping case headed to county court

January 24, 2019

A Maryland man arrested earlier this month in a 20-year-old kidnapping case waived his right to a preliminary hearing Wednesday morning.

Fifty-year-old Timothy David Nelson Jr. will face kidnapping, rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, unlawful restraint, statutory sexual assault and related charges in Somerset County court.

“We’re encouraged that the charges were waived rather than having to conduct a preliminary hearing,” District Attorney Lisa Lazzari-Strasiser said.

Nelson is represented by Somerset attorney Bill Carroll.

“It is not my policy to talk about pending cases,” he said.

In 1999 a 10-year-old Cairnbrook girl was playing with friends when she was abducted, prompting a search. According to court documents, Nelson fled south on Route 160. During the trip he produced a gun and threatened the girl, stopping to sexually assault her.

The girl was left along a road near the Pennsylvania and West Virginia line and was found by a passing motorist. State police in Uniontown collected evidence that was left behind, but the DNA did not match anyone in law enforcement databases until additional testing was done last year using new technology.

Nelson’s DNA also matched DNA from two unsolved kidnappings from 1988 in Hagerstown, Maryland, according to police, who would not rule out the possibility of additional victims. He has not been formally charged in those cases.

He is in the Somerset County Jail in lieu of a $750,000 bond.

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