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Registered sex offender and second man arrested in connection with missing Rancho Santa Margarita girl

July 13, 2010 |  4:45 pm

Two men have been charged in connection with the disappearance of a 13-year-old Rancho Santa Margarita girl who went missing for five days before being found unharmed Monday, Orange County Sheriff’s Department investigators said.

Dave Burton Egert, 48, has been charged with communicating with a minor for sexual purposes, and Richard Ray Carroll, 68, has been charged with child molestation, said investigator Joe Hoskins. Carroll is a registered sex offender, authorities said.

Both men allegedly communicated with the girl online. Hoskins said investigators are still trying to piece together the case and determine whether the men knew each other or were acting separately.

The girl disappeared last Wednesday. A break in the case came over the weekend as investigators gained access to her Internet accounts, Hoskins said.

Both Egert and Carroll were arrested Monday. They will be arraigned Wednesday at Harbor Justice Center in Newport Beach.

Bradford has returned home to her family and “is doing OK,” Hoskins said.

-- Samuel Allen

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