GROVETOWN, Ga. (WJBF) – 20-year-old Sung Jun Yoon has been charged with Child Molestation, Aggravated Child Molestation, and Enticing a Child for Indecent Purposes after an investigation involving a possible 11-year-old runaway from Appling.
Friday night, Dec. 17th, an Appling parent contacted Columbia County Sheriff’s Office in reference to a possible runaway child. The child was not home when the parent returned from work and, when texted, said they were walking with a friend from school.
Around 9 p.m., the parent demanded the child come home and, soon after, the 11-year-old cut off all communication with the parent. Reaching out to the parent of the friend the child said they were with, the mother found out the child was not there and had not be seen by either.
After continued searching turned up nothing, the mother called the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office around midnight, beginning the investigation.
At 4:45 am., a follow-up from deputies and a second round of interviews revealed new information, according to the incident report filed in the case, including a clue from a neighbor who saw a taxi stop at the location around 4:30 p.m. that afternoon.
Following the trail, Columbia County deputies located the driver and found phone numbers associated to the pickup at the child’s home. The driver was able to point deputies in the direction of the Avid Hotel in Grovetown.
A comparison of the phone numbers used to book and contact the taxi were then compared to hotel records and a room rental by a man with the last name of “Yoon,” who had traveled from Charlotte.
Soon after, a search of the room associated with the account resulted in the recovery of the child.
At least five Columbia County deputies and investigators were involved in the search for the child, following up on leads in the case, and the arrest of 20-year-old Yoon.
Yoon was booked into the Columbia County Detention Center Saturday and is being held by authorities without bond, according to records kept by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office.