Cornell Police assist in apprehending man who allegedly abducted children

December 24, 2014 by Mark H. Anbinder

A Tompkins County man is in custody and two children, the subject of an Amber Alert issued Wednesday morning, are safe this afternoon. Cornell University Police Department officers secured the man and his children after they were spotted on a TCAT bus on the Cornell campus.

Leonard Thorne and his son. Photo from Thorne family.Leonard Thorne and his son. Photo from Thorne family.Late this morning, the Tompkins County Sheriff's Department issued an Amber Alert, saying two young children were abducted on Tuesday afternoon. The children are Violet Thorne, about two and a half, and Brian Thorne, about four years old, and the suspect in their abduction is Leonard Thorne. 

The abduction occurred at about 4pm on Tuesday, December 23rd, near Heron Drive, in the Enfield area west of Ithaca, according to the Sheriff's Department, and the Amber Alert was issued at 11:48am on Wednesday. The children had been removed from the suspect's custody by family court, according to the Sheriff's Department, "due to the suspect's substance abuse and child abuse and neglect history." The suspect had failed to surrender the children.

The Syracuse Post-Standard reported that the father and children were spotted on a Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit bus, which was stopped at about 1:15pm on the Cornell campus. A CUPD representative referred questions on this afternoon's events to the Tompkins County Sheriff's Department, who did not respond to requests for comment.

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