CORBIN, Ky. — A Kentucky man is accused of trying to buy a 3-year-old boy from his grandmother, authorities said.
Ronnie Lou Helton, 73, of Corbin, was arrested Wednesday and charged with kidnapping of a minor and promoting human trafficking, according to Whitley County Detention Center online booking records. He is being held without bail.
According to authorities, the child’s grandmother, Kristy Baker, called police and said Helton approached the child to help him climb over a fence, WKYT reported.
Baker said she was standing a few feet away on her front porch, and she and her boyfriend told Helton to stop, the television station reported. Baker said Helton then offered her $1,000 for the child.
“He said, ‘I’ll give you a thousand dollars for this little boy,’” Baker told WKYT.
Baker got enough information from Helton’s car and called authorities, who arrested him, WYMT reported.
“I really do not want to imagine what he could have done if he got him,” Baker told the television station. “My best advice out there to anyone out there is hold your kids close and keep an eye on them. It only takes a split second to lose them.”