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Man faces federal charges of kidnapping, raping 4-year-old

Thomas Lawton Evans. Jr Photo: SC Department of Corrections

A man is facing federal charges of kidnapping and raping a 4-year-old South Carolina girl that he drove across three Southern states.

U.S. Attorney Beth Drake says Wednesday a grand jury indicted 37-year-old Thomas Evans Jr. on charges of kidnapping, child sexual abuse and transporting a child to engage in sexual activity.

Evans also faces state charges. Authorities say he picked the girl's mother at random and followed her to her home, where he raped and beat her before escaping with her daughter.

The girl was found safely with Evans in Alabama on Feb. 14. He fled from police and was arrested in Mississippi.

Evans is set to be arraigned on the new charges March 27.

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