Authorities arrest 1 in connection with abducted child recovered in ETX

Authorities arrest 1 in connection with abducted child recovered in ETX
Wednesday, July 9, 2014 - 8:33pm

Authorities have arrested a Texas man in connection with the abduction of a Benton, Arkansas, child. The 6-year-old girl was recovered by Winnsboro Police on Tuesday.

According to the U.S. Marshall's Office, agents took into custody the child's father, Thomas Bunievatz, 31, at his Pottsboro home. He was booked into the Grayson County Jail on interference with child custody. The man, whom had visitation rights, was listed as wanted after he did not return his daughter to her mother in an agreed upon time. The mother reported the incident to police and a warrant was issued.

Benton Police said Bunievatz fiancé, Tobie Phillips, 38, was also involved when the child was taken to Texas. A warrant is currently out for her arrest.

The child was returned to the maternal grandmother in Winnsboro, Texas, when Winnsboro officers recovered the girl, but Bunievatz and Phillips weren’t located at the time.

Bunievatz is in the process of being expedited back to Arkansas at this time to face charges. This is an on-going investigation and additional charges could be forthcoming.

Anybody with information related to this case is encouraged to contact the Benton Police Department at 501-778-1171 or 501-315-TIPS. Individuals also may send an anonymous crime tip about this incident to CRIMES (274637) with the keyword BNPD in the body of the text or go to to leave a tip.

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