A 16-year-old girl reported missing last week was found early Thursday morning with multiple stab wounds inside the truck of a registered sex offender after a 40-mile chase in Louisiana, cops said.
Ashley Lyon was reported missing last Wednesday and authorities suspected she was with Steven Patrick Myers, a twice-convicted registered sex offender.
Here’s what you need to know.
1. She Was In Critical Condition With Multiple Stab Wounds When Police Found Her
Cops chased Myers for 40 miles on Interstate 10 to Lafayette, Louisiana. According to the Tampa Bay Times, when stop sticks deflated Myers’ tires, he got out of his Chevy with multiple self-inflicted stab wounds and jumped on the hood of his car, yelling at police to shoot him.
A police dog attacked Myers and he was shocked with a Taser. After arresting the man, authorities found Ashely Lyon inside the truck with multiple stab wounds. She was taken to a local hospital in Lafayette.
Earlier this week, police learned that Myers and Lyon had exchanged over 2,000 texts since they met six months ago, including more than a dozen immediately before she went missing.
Last week, Ashley’s father, Roger, told the Tampa Bay Times:
She doesn’t need to be around this guy. He’s a sexual predator.
Ashley often hung out with Myers and his two sons, Bryan and Jason. Her parents thought it was strange that the older man would ride skateboards with his sons and their friend, and said that Ashley downplayed his past. The Tampa Bay Times reports that Ashley was fully aware that Myers had spent time in prison, but her parents had no idea that he was convicted for child molestation.
Myers served two sentences in Forsyth County, Georgia, from 1999-2003, and then again from 2010-2012.
2. She Has Bipolar Disorder
The Tampa Bay Times reports that two weeks before her disappearance, Ashley was caught by deputies with Steven Myers and one of his sons. The three of them were getting ready to buy marijuana. While the police let Ashley off with a warning, her parents grounded her.
Last Wednesday, Ashley’s brother saw her in her room at 2:30 pm. He came back at 4:30 pm to tell her dinner was ready, but she was gone. The window was open and the window screen was off its hinges.
Ashley was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and left behind her medication.
3. A Truck Stop Cashier Recognized Lyon and Myers From Nancy Grace’s Facebook Post and Called the Police
Fawn Dominique, a cashier at the Tiger Truck Stop in Grosse Tete, Louisiana, recognized Lyon and Myers from pictures she had seen on television journalist Nancy Grace’s Facebook page. The Tampa Tribune reports that after the two bought a pack of cigarettes and left the store, Dominique went outside to see what type of car Myers was driving. She immediately told her manager, Scott Holbrook, to call the police.
Authorities received the call from Holbrook around 10:15 pm Wednesday. Myers did not pull over when the police attempted a traffic stop, and hit four other cars in an attempt to create a road block for the police. Lafayette police deflated five of Myers’ six tires, but he continued to flee from authorities. Eventually, Myers was forced to stop his vehicle when one tire caught on fire.
4. Her Family Is Expected to Issue A Statement Thursday Afternoon
$5,000 reward offered for info about 16 yo Ashley Lyons whereabouts. Believed to be with sex offender Steven Myers pic.twitter.com/EUP1OfUyhU
— CandaceMcCowanWFLA (@WFLACandace) June 14, 2014
According to The Tampa Tribute, Ashley’s mother left for Louisiana as soon as she heard about her daughter’s condition. The family will be issuing a statement Thursday in the late-afternoon.
Authorities report that Myers will now face charges for attempted murder. On Tuesday, a nationwide warrant was issued for his arrest for interference with child custody and unlawful sexual activity with a minor.
Late last week, Ashley’s parents offered $5,000 to anyone with information about their daughter’s whereabouts. Roger Lyons, Ashley’s father, is a former military intelligence agent, and was confident that Ashley and Steven Myers were together.
5. Myers Is Injured
During the approximately 40 mile car chase, Myers struck four vehicles to create a road block. Police report that when he exited his vehicle and jumped on the hood of his car, he was injured with what authorities believe are two self-inflicted stab wounds. Myers was also repeatedly bitten by police dogs. After his arrest, Myers was taken to a local hospital in Lafayette.