(SPOTSYLVANIA COUNTY, Va.) — A Virginia man is accused of holding his girlfriend and their two children against their will for more than two years, authorities said.
The woman and her children were rescued on Saturday after deputies in Spotsylvania County, Virginia, responded to a welfare check request. Deputies spoke to Kariem Moore, 43, on the front lawn of the home, the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release Wednesday.
“Mr. Moore became evasive when advised that they were there to check on the family,” the sheriff’s office said in a statement.
As the conversation with Moore continued, the deputies saw a woman and two children “run out of a side door and away from the home,” the sheriff’s office said.
The woman and children were escorted to safety. Authorities learned then that the woman, 32, was Moore’s girlfriend, and the two children, ages 8 and 11, were theirs, the sheriff’s office said. The children and their mother allegedly had been held against their will in the house for more than two years, the sheriff’s office said.
The children were examined and released to family members, the sheriff’s office said, and the woman is being treated at a medical facility.
Moore was arrested and charged with three counts of abduction by force and one count of felony assault and battery.
“The investigation into the nature of the confinement is ongoing, and further charges may be pending,” the sheriff’s office said.
The Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office also urged people to speak up in the future: “This case is a reminder to all citizens to be vigilant and report any activity that you think is suspicious or simply out of the ordinary. One phone call could make a major difference in someone’s life.”
Moore was arraigned on Monday, Lt. Charles Carey of the sheriff’s office said. It was not immediately clear if he entered a plea.
Moore’s public defender did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.
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