Authorities conducted a search the home of a Paulding County couple accused of child cruelty after their 18-year-old son was found malnourished and confused at a California bus station.
An alert security guard and former Los Angeles police officer spotted Mitch Comer at a Los Angeles Greyhound bus station on September 11. Comer was described as confused, alone and looking much younger than his 18 years. Authorities said he was 5-foot-3 and weighed 87 pounds.
The investigation led back to a Paulding County home. On September 12, Comer's parents were arrested.
The parents of teen, stepfather Paul and mother Shelia Comer, have been charged with six counts of child cruelty and one count of false imprisonment. They are accused of keeping their son locked up and starved for two years.
The family has been living in the Paulding home for two years, according to authorities. Police believe the case involves several states.
"This family moved around multiple times over the past several years, so that's why we involved the GBI and FBI. We need those national resources to help us because this abuse may have been going on in other jurisdictions," said Cpl. Ashley Henson of the Paulding County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies said that Paul Comer dropped off Mitch at a Mississippi bus station on September 8 -- the day after his 18th birthday -- and told him never to return.
Police are investigating whether the teen's sisters were also abused. They said that it appears the girls have never been in school.
"We do know that they are very undersized, and we don't know yet if there's any situations where they're maybe malnourished, or stuff like that. We're still investigating," said Henson, who added that the girls have not been interviewed by police yet.
The girls have been placed in state care. Mitch Comer is legally an adult, but police have also placed him in a foster home.
According to FOX 5's Aungelique Proctor, the stepfather ran an appliance repair business from the home, and the mother homeschooled the children.
The Comers are being held in the Paulding County Jail without bond.
Investigators from the Paulding County Sheriff's Office, FBI and the GBI arrived just after 5 p.m. Authorities were seen carrying evidence out of the home.They would not describe what they found.
"We have corroborated some of the things that Mitch has told us, and that's one of the things that we wanted to do when we came in house," said Henson.
The search was completed by 8 p.m.
Henson said that Mitch Comer was doing OK.
"He's in good spirits. He's doing well. He actually needed some eye glasses, so we've made arrangements for him to have some eye glasses because they were taken from him several years ago," said Henson.
The district attorney's office has set up a fund for Mitch and his two sisters. Donations can be made to the "Mitch Comer Fund" at West Side Bank in Dallas.