SAN DIEGO – Newly released documents in the case against a Tampa man show the disturbing communication that led to the alleged kidnapping of an Escondido teen.
Tony McLeod is now facing a federal charge of enticement of a minor, along with the charges in Florida and California.
“He will be transported from the state of Florida here to San Diego to faces these charges in a San Diego courtroom,” said FBI Special Agent Darrell Foxworth.
The complaint filed in U.S. District Court on Monday and the search warrant from Hillsborough County, Florida are now providing insight into the weeks prior to the alleged kidnapping.
The communication between McLeod and the victim started through an online Playstation game, but eventually moved to text messages.
According to the search warrant, the victim’s aunt first discovered the text messages on the evening of May 26, when she observed “her nephew texting on his phone incessantly throughout the day.” The document said she checked his phone when he went to bed and “discovered he had been having an ongoing, sexually explicit relationship with an adult male.” That relationship had been going on “for more than one month.”
The documents show McLeod and the victim sent photographs and videos of their private parts.
The federal complaint details some of the text messages from McLeod. In one of them he wrote, “I’ve just made u vidos but u won’t.” It also describes the photographs McLeod was sending to the teen, including “a photograph of himself, naked, in his bathroom.”
“There are some references there to some very disturbing pictures and videos,” said Foxworth. “What that does for us as investigators and for the prosecutors in this case, it helps to establish motive and intent on why the individual did what he did.”
According to the document, McLeod also wrote that he “loves” the victim. At one point he wrote, “I don’t like you being there” and that he wants to get the victim “out of there soon.”
The documents also provide more insight into the kidnapping itself. Fox 5 has learned the victim “did not go to his last two classes, putting his disappearance sometime between noon and 1400 hours” on June 10.
Fox 5 has also learned on May 26 the victim’s aunt contacted McLeod and told him “not to contact” the victim any longer.
According to the search warrant, Tampa police seized an iPhone and black Samsung from McLeod’s vehicle, which was parked at the Tampa airport.
Foxworth said investigators are still working to determine when McLeod will be transported to San Diego. He is scheduled for a court hearing in Tampa on June 20.