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Thursday, Apr 24, 2014
Crime & Courts

Ocala military academy teacher accused hiding runaway


A teacher at Francis Marion Military Academy in Ocala is accused of hiding a runaway student over the weekend.

On Friday, the girl’s mother reported her daughter had run away. She said she found Duane Ernest Adams, 54, waiting outside her home that morning waiting to drive the girl to school. She said she told him to leave and that she had driven the girl to school herself.

The girl did not come home from school that afternoon and she had not attended classes that day, police said.

Officers followed up tips through the weekend about the girl’s whereabouts. Adams was questioned twice, and both times denied knowledge of her location, police said.

Police received information Monday that the girl was at Steak N’ Shake, 3800 SW College Road, Ocala. An officer made contact with the child and she was returned to her parents.

The child and her parents met with police today, as did Adams, and police learned that Adams had taken the child from school and allowed her to stay in his apartment during school. That evening he took her to Daytona where they stayed in a motel for two nights, then on Sunday Adams drove the child to the Ocala RV Campgrounds, 3200 SW 38th Ave., where he rented a cabin for her for four days, police said.

He denied any inappropriate physical contact with the child, police said.

Adams was charged with interference with child custody and booked into the Marion County Jail.