Suspect in abduction of Texas girls after mother's death caught in Colorado, girls safe

Image: Suspect Terry Miles
Suspect Terry MilesNational Center for Missing and Exploited Children

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By Daniella Silva

A man suspected in the abduction of two girls whose mother may have been murdered in Texas was caught in Colorado and the girls are safe, the Round Rock police chief said.

Round Rock Police Department Chief Allen Banks said on Twitter that Terry Allen Miles was "caught in Colorado without incident."

"Our whole goal was to bring these two sisters home," Banks said at a press conference Wednesday night.

Earlier Wednesday Banks said Miles, 44, can be seen in surveillance video at a business in Trinidad, Colorado, from Dec. 30 — the day before police found Miles’ roommate, Tonya Bates, dead in her home.

After the grim discovery of Bates’ body on Sunday, police said they learned her daughters, Lilianais Griffith, 14, and Luluvioletta Bandera-Magret, 7, were missing. The two girls lived with their mother.

Miles was called a suspect in the girls’ abduction and a person of interest in the death of their mother.

Miles was arrested after a sheriff’s official in Las Animas County, where Trinidad is located, found a vehicle that it had been looking for at around 7:30 p.m. local time (9:30 p.m. ET) and Miles allegedly began driving erratically, Banks said.

After backup arrived, a "high risk traffic stop" was conducted and Miles was taken into custody without incident, Banks said. The two girls were inside the vehicle and were not harmed, he said.

Banks said earlier Wednesday that while he had not yet read the autopsy results for Bates, police were "investigating [her death as] a homicide at this point." Banks previously characterized Bates’ death as "suspicious in nature."

Two detectives from the Round Rock police department will fly out to conduct interviews, Banks said.

"Obviously we still have a lot of work to do in regards to this case, we still have a lot of questions to be answered," Banks said. "Hopefully we will have those questions answered."

The girls will be checked out at a hospital and will be returned home at some point in the near future, Banks said.