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Police: Kidnapping suspect, victim met via dating app

Court documents in the case of a man accused of kidnapping claim the suspect and victim met through a mobile dating app. Michael Dickson, 35, is charged with kidnapping after allegedly taking the 19-year-old victim against her will.

The victim told investigators she met Dickson through the app “Plenty of Fish.” Earlier this month, Dickson apparently picked the victim up at her home, with the idea being they would go back to Dickson’s home.

According to the victim, when she got nervous while driving, Dickson said he was now her “dominant,” she was his “submissive,” and as long as she did what he said, she would be okay.

When the pair got to Dickson’s home in Cole County, he allegedly raped her, causing physical harm in the process. The victim also claims Dickson tried to keep her from contacting her mother with her phone. The woman says she was able to get away while the suspect was in another room, and called her mother. The mother said she would track the phone and call the police, at which point Dickson took the victim home. During the drive, Dickson reportedly told the victim that wouldn’t be the last time she saw him.

Several days later, Dickson apparently called the victim again, saying he would pick her up that night. He allegedly indicated she would be with him for a long time and wouldn’t see her family or friends again. Investigators used the phone number the victim used to communicate with Dickson to track the suspect down and arrest him in Cole County.

Dickson is currently on parole for arson and burglary. In 2011, he was charged and convicted for a burglary and fire at Weaver’s Tire Services in Versailles. He is being held in the Camden County Adult Detention Facility without bond. Dickson is reportedly set to appear before the court in Camden County on May 10th.

Camden County deputies said the investigation into the sexual assault will be conducted in cooperation with authorities in Cole County.

Camden County Sheriff Dwight Franklin said, “Kidnapping is a serious crime. What happened to this young lady is a tragedy. I encourage all citizens to do their research on dating prospects they meet online before meeting them in person.”

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