A registered sex offender was back in front of a judge Thursday on charges of violating his probation after he was found with a missing teen.
State police found a 15-year-old runaway in 23-year-old Johnathan Gonzalez's Hartford apartment.
He was serving a ten-year probation from a 2007 conviction for risk of injury to a minor. A condition of that probation was that he have no unsupervised contact with anyone under the age of 16.
“I believe this person was a runaway and I believe evidence will come out that he was harboring this person, because he felt sorry for her," public defender Robert Famiglietti told the court.
State police said the East Granby teen, reported missing by her family on April 10, went to
Gonzalez’s Hartford apartment voluntarily. Police say their computer crimes unit pinged the girl’s phone to locate her on April 15.
“Technology has come a long way. Our major crime detectives are phenomenal. So, it’s amazing what they can do," said State Police Trooper Kelly Grant.
Police found the teen at 33 Rowe Avenue, where neighbors said Gonzalez has lived for half a dozen years.
“I can’t believe it happened under my roof because, cause it’s really my roof too. So, it’s like unbelievable," said Janicette Reyes, who lives in the same building.
The public defender said the pair knew each other through family.
“This is a person who is allegedly known to him through a stepsister and may even be related to him through the stepsister. So, this is not like a dating relationship or he had any intentions," said Famiglietti.
Reyes said she’d seen the teen’s picture in the news.
“To really find out that they did find her in the building. I’m thinking they’re just gonna do a quick check and she wasn’t going to be here, but to really find her, that really hit hard," said Reyes.
Gonzalez’s attorney pointed out in court that there are no sexual allegations in the case at this time, but with more charges pending, Judge Joan Alexander set Gonzalez’s bond at $750,000.
He is next scheduled to appear in court on May 1.