Tad Cummins to remain in jail until trial - WSMV News 4

Tad Cummins to remain in jail until trial

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Tad Cummins (Source: Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office) Tad Cummins (Source: Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office)
Tad Cummins appears in court with his attorney. (Source: Carden Illustration) Tad Cummins appears in court with his attorney. (Source: Carden Illustration)

Accused kidnapper Tad Cummins has been deemed a flight risk and will remain in jail until his trial.

Cummins appeared in federal court in Nashville on Friday afternoon.

The FBI who initially interviewed Cummins said he admitted to sex with a 15-year-old former student “most nights” they were on the run. The pair were gone for 37 nights.

Cummins initially told investigators he did not have sex with the teen, but changed his story. He also told investigators he made a pact with the girl to deny they had sex.

The FBI agent said Cummins told him the journey went through several states and he used three different license plates.

Cummins said he bought a tablet computer in Colorado to keep up with the news. He also bought a kayak in California and tested a possible trip into Mexico in the Coronado Bay, but eventually paddled back and interacted with a police officer who saw them in the water and was concerned about their safety.

Cummins’ defense attorney Dumaka Shabazz told the court his client didn’t have an attorney during his initial interview and may have been coerced by investigators.

The defense team also pointed out Cummins has never been accused of any violent crimes before and there is no evidence he was holding the girl against her will.

After hearing all the testimony, Judge Barbara Holmes determined Cummins is a flight risk and a danger to the community. She ordered that he remained in jail until his trial.

His case was bound over to the grand jury.

Cummins was captured with the 15-year-old girl in Northern California last month after being on the run for more than five weeks.

Cummins is charged with transporting a minor across state lines to engage in criminal sexual conduct. If convicted, he would have to serve at least 10 years behind bars.

It's unclear if additional federal charges will be brought against the former Culleoka Unit School teacher.

Cummins' wife also claims he admitted to having sex with his student while they were on the run. That admission allegedly came during a recorded jail phone call.

A spokesperson for acting U.S. Attorney Jack Smith said more charges could be coming if the grand jury returns an indictment.

Court documents include the note Cummins left his wife before disappearing on March 13:


I am so sorry! I am on my way to Virginia Beach and maybe D.C. just to think and clear my mind of all this crap. I am not running away. I'll be back. Don't call police they'll think I ran cause I'm guilty and I'm not! I love you and I'll call you soon. Please forgive me.


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