Corbin, Kentucky: 73-year-old Ronnie Lou Helton remains behind bars at the Whitley County Jail on charges of kidnapping and promoting human trafficking of someone under the age of 18 after he allegedly attempted to remove a 3-year-old boy from his grandmother's yard where he was playing and then offered her $1,000 for the child.
The attempted kidnapping reportedly happened last week on Wednesday, April 7.
The grandmother, Kristy Baker said that her grandson, Frank, had been playing in the yard when he seemed to randomly inform her that "there was a man in a red car with four doors across the street," she told WBIR.
Baker reported that the man, later identified as Helton, approached the fencing of the property and grasped Frank's hand, leading him along the fence line to a lower side of the fence.
"I jumped up and said, 'hey, what are you doing?" Baker stated that Helton released his grip on Frank at which point Frank ran back to her before running to hide behind her boyfriend, Tony Goodwin, as he rounded the corner of the residence.
Helton is said to have approached Baker and said, "I'll give you $1,000 for this boy."
In no uncertain terms, Goodwin told him to leave. Helton returned to his vehicle and departed.
Baker was able to provide the Corbin Police Department with a license plate number along with a description of the vehicle and suspect.
Officers located Helton later that afternoon at an apartment and arrested him. He made his first appearance in court on Monday morning and his next court date is not known at this time.
According to WYMT Helton was previously arrested in Clay County for solicitation of prostitution in 2019.