Clearfield, PA – The two men who allegedly ran away to Nebraska with a teenage girl have waived their rights to a preliminary hearing yesterday.
22-year-old Austin Patterson, currently in SCI Mercer and formerly of Clearfield, has been charged with felony counts of statutory sexual assault, fleeing law enforcement, unlawful sexual contact with a minor, hindering apprehension, criminal use of a communication facility, and dissemination of sexual material to a minor. He also faces misdemeanor charges of endangering the welfare of children, corruption of minors and disorderly conduct.
26-year-old Kevin Osborn of Clearfield is facing felony charges of hindering apprehension, plus misdemeanors for corruption of minors and disorderly conduct.
These charges stem back to Oct. 6 of 2016 for a report of a runaway teenage girl, who was 15 at the time. The girl’s father believed she was possibly with Patterson. Police attempted to track her cell phone but found that it was either turned off or dead. After police searched the girl’s iPad history, they learned that the girl had likely left with Patterson and Osborn. They were traveling in Osborn’s vehicle. Osborn’s fiancé later contacted police to report that his vehicle had been stolen and that he had been getting phone calls from Osborn, who said he needed money and was in Iowa. Police traced that blocked call back to Lincoln, Nebraska.
Pennsylvania police worked alongside Nebraska police to find the runaway teen. They located her at the end of November and were able to take her to the local police station on Dec. 3 to talk about where she had been for the last two months.
The girl reportedly admitted to police that she ran away from home in the early morning hours of Oct. 6. She first told police that she hadn’t had sex with Patterson until they got to Nebraska, but she later gave voluntary written statements that said their relationship began several months beforehand in July. She said that they went directly to Lincoln, Nebraska, which Patterson had suggested. They stayed at a weekly-rate hotel until they eventually began living with other people in a trailer park. She said that both she and Osborn knew that Patterson was on probation and facing criminal charges in Clearfield, and that was part of the reason why they decided to flee. The teen said that they had come up with the plan so that they could continue their relationship.