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Dallas couple held without bond on child cruelty, false imprisonment charges
by staff reports
September 21, 2012 08:53 AM | 2605 views | 0 0 comments | 19 19 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A Dallas couple was being held without bond today after they allegedly locked their son in a room for years before turning him out and placing him on a cross-country bus earlier this month.

Paulding sheriff's detectives arrested Paul Matthew Comer, 48, and Shelia Marie Comer, 39, and charged them with six felony counts of cruelty to children and one felony count of false imprisonment, according to a spokesman for the Paulding County Sheriff's Department.

The Comers are currently being held in the Paulding County Detention Center.

Paulding Sheriff's spokesman Cpl. Ashley Henson stated, "In the evening hours of Sept. 11, Paulding County Crimes Against Children [unit] detectives were contacted by detectives from the Los Angeles Police Department regarding a severe case of child abuse and neglect that occurred in Paulding County over the course of the last few years."

Los Angeles detectives told Paulding investigators the victim, Mitch Comer, 18, was "put on a bus and sent across the country from Jackson, Miss., to Los Angeles and told to never come back," Henson said.

A retired Los Angeles Police Department officer working as a security guard at the bus station spotted the victim, who the guard said did not look like he belonged in the area, Henson stated.

The guard reportedly began a conversation with the victim, who told him the story of how he got to Los Angeles, Henson stated.

The retired officer then alerted Los Angeles Police Department detectives who subsequently contacted Paulding County authorities "who launched an investigation immediately," Henson said.

"Further investigation revealed that the victim had been malnourished and locked in a room for several years. The victims’ two juvenile sisters told investigators that they had not seen him in over two years and that they did not even know what color his hair was."

Paulding and Los Angeles detectives determined where the victim lived and Paulding detectives went to the Comers' home on Vivid Lane in Dallas to speak with the victims' parents, Henson stated.

Once Paulding detectives completed their interviews with the couple, the Comers were arrested and charged with six felony counts of cruelty to children and one felony count of false imprisonment, Henson stated.

Paulding County Sheriff’s Office detectives and representatives from the Paulding County District Attorney’s Office went to Los Angeles and met with detectives and returned to Georgia with the victim Thursday.

"This is still an active case and there may be more charges pending in the future," Henson stated.

The two juvenile siblings that were living in the residence as well as the victim have been placed in the custody of the Paulding County Department of Family and Children Service "until further notice," Henson said.

The Paulding County Sheriff’s Office is working in conjunction with the Georgia Bureau

of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation on this case, Henson said.

Anyone with information on this case or is familiar with the Comers are urged to

contact the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office Crimes Against Children Division at (770)

445-6105.
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