Week goes by, still no sign of missing TN teen

Week goes by, still no sign of missing TN teen
Tad Cummins (Source: TBI)
Tad Cummins (Source: TBI)
Most recent image of Elizabeth Thomas (Source: TBI)
Most recent image of Elizabeth Thomas (Source: TBI)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A week has gone by and still, no sign of a 15-year-old girl from Columbia, Tennessee.

Mary Catherine Elizabeth Thomas was last seen March 13. She is believed to be in imminent danger.

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said Thomas was kidnapped by Tad Cummins, a 50-year-old teacher.

TBI issued a plea for Cummins to surrender.

"Do the right thing, give her up, turn yourself in, bring her home," TBI spokesperson Josh DeVine said.

TBI issued a nationwide Amber Alert because with so few leads, investigators said Cummins and Thomas could be anywhere by now.

DeVine said the TBI is asking for all property owners to search their property. They are encouraging business owners, especially those with large parking lots, to check their parking lots and surrounding areas.

"The fact of the matter is they are probably out of the view of the general public," DeVine said.

He said the efforts of the TBI have still produced no credible leads.

"If it's possible, we've thought of it and we're trying to use it and they have not proven successful at this point," DeVine said.

The TBI does not believe the two have a large amount of items with them. As a result, they could be wearing the same items of clothing. Additionally, DeVine said TBI has been working to learn what caused the kidnapping and how it has resulted in this.

"Everywhere we're learning about him does nothing to calm our fears for her," DeVine said.

Thomas' brother, James, said his family has repeatedly tried reaching out to her via text message, phone, and Facebook. So far, they've received no response.

"I just want her to let us know that she's okay. If she could call somebody, just let us know that she's alive and well, the sooner we could get word that she's OK, it'll be a big sigh of relief," Thomas said.

Her father Anthony described his daughter as a boisterous, athletic, and social teenager who loves her family. He said Thomas met Cummins at her school in Maury County, Tennessee, where he worked as a teacher.

"He had told her that he had been in the FBI and CIA. I tried to convince her that you don't go from jobs like that to teaching in a rural school," Anthony Thomas said. "We all love you very much and we miss you. The house is not the same without you here. We just don't want to go on without you."

Cummins' wife also spoke out, hoping to reach her husband, to encourage him to turn himself in.

"Tad this is not you. This is not who you are. We can help you get through this. No matter how far you've gone, or what's happening right now, God's grace is sufficient for you, and he wants you to come home," Jill Cummins said. "Your family wants their Papi back. Please do the right thing and turn yourself into the police and bring Beth home."

TBI received more than 180 tips, but so far, there have been no credible sightings in this case.

The TBI released new photos of Cummins that were captured on surveillance camera in Walmart just days prior to the kidnapping. They said they expect to be releasing the most current photo they have of Elizabeth soon.

Tad Cummins and Elizabeth Thomas are believed to be in a silver 2015 Nissan Rogue with Tennessee tag 976-ZPT. Anyone who sees the vehicle is asked to call 911 or 1-800-TBI-FIND.

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