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Missing 9-year-old schoolgirl kidnapped by uncle found alive by Baptist minister after holding him at gunpoint

Mirror logo Mirror 14/05/2016 By Gemma Mullin
Carlie Marie Trent and her uncle Gary Simpson. © Mirror Carlie Marie Trent and her uncle Gary Simpson.

A nine-year-old schoolgirl who was kidnapped by her uncle has been found alive by a Baptist minister after holding him at gunpoint.

Carlie Marie Trent was reporting missing more than a week ago after she was abducted from school by her 57-year-old uncle Gary Simpson, authorities said.

Gary Simpson. © Mirror Gary Simpson.

She was discovered on Friday by Roger Carpenter and three friends who had been driving around rural Hawkins County, Tennessee, when they spotted a little girl holding a teddy bear.

The minister, who hunts and farms in the area, told KSBW that they followed the girl back to a property where the found Simpson and he held him at gunpoint while friend Donnie called the police.

Officers arrested Simpson, who previously had custody of Carlie, and he was charged with custodial interference and aggravated kidnapping and is due to appear in court on Monday, according to WBIR .

© Mirror

TBI director Mark Gwyn told : "I think this is just two heroes that went onto the property just to see, by chance, could they be there, and they were."

Carpenter told WBTV that he had been searching for Carlie everyday except one, when he went to church to worship, but said: "I'm no hero by no means. I'm blessed."

Carlie Marie Trent. © Mirror Carlie Marie Trent.

He explained that his own granddaughter is the spitting image of Carlie called Calie and it struck home so he felt like he had to do something.

She has now been returned to her family in Rogersville, Tennessee, after medical assessments.

Police had asked for the public's help in finding the little girl after she was caught on CCTV in a Walmart store buying groceries, including bread, peanut butter, paper towels and crackers.

He also bought items including a swimming costume, a pack of underwear, two bottles of nail polish and two tubes of lip gloss.

Officers believed he could have been hiding at a campsite after he was seen buying camping items on the day she vanished. © Mirror

The reward for information leading to her discovery was $40,000.

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