FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) - An illegal immigrant convicted of kidnapping and raping a 6-year-old girl was given four life sentences for the heinous crime.
"What this defendant did is every parent's worst nightmare. The scars he caused will never go away," said prosecutor Cami Gildner.
Edis Moya Alas kidnapped the child who was asleep on her living room couch in 2016. Her parents awoke in the night to find her missing, and a large-scale search was immediately launched, bringing together family members, friends, police officers and dozens of volunteers from the community.
Around lunchtime the following day, a volunteer heard cries coming from a wooded area in Titus Paulsel Park and alerted police. As a police officer investigated, the child ran from an area of deep underbrush and lept into his arms. In the country illegally from El Salvador, Alas was found hiding nearby, and he was taken into custody at the scene. Graphic photos were later recovered from his cellphone, and his DNA was found on the girl.
After their daughter was returned to them, the child's parents were grateful.
"I prayed to God to return her in good health. I didn't care, as long as I was able to see my daughter," the child's mother stated through a translator in 2016. "It was a very difficult time for me. The seconds, minutes seemed like an eternity."
Alas, who does not speak English and used an interpreter throughout the trial, did not take the stand in his defense.
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