Jul 27, 2012 8:16 PM
TUCSON - The former high school coach who, police say, disappeared with a Tucson teen in May has been arrested in Mexico and was extradited to Houston, Texas today.
Todd Hezlitt was picked up by Mexican police in the beach town of Mazatlan, Mexico. Brooke White, who was 15 when she fled with Hezlitt, is in the custody of the U.S. Consulate.
Hezlitt now awaits extradition back to Tucson, Pima County Sheriff's officials state in a news release.
Hezlitt was arrested in April for sexual misconduct with a minor. In May, investigators say, he fled with the teenager. In June, a warrant was issued for his arrest because he failed to show up for a court appearance.
News 4 learned the teenager contacted family members and told them she wanted to come home. She was told to go to the U.S. Consulate.
News 4 spoke with family members who say their prayers were answered. They are thankful Brooke is unharmed.
Last month at a prayer vigil her mother said, " No matter what we love and care about her and all we want is for her to come home and know that she is safe."
Her family is in the process of getting her a passport so she can come home. It's expected White will be returning to Tucson sometime this weekend.
Sgt. Gerard Moretz, who heads the Crimes Against Children Unit, says there is a tremendous sigh of relief given Hezlitt's background with weapons and his taking a high risk step to evade capture, leaving the country with a minor child.
He credits the work of the U.S. Marshals working with their Mexican counterparts in finding Brooke White and then bringing 38-year-old Hezlitt to justice. He's says it was a tremendous effort .