UPDATE: U.S. Marshals Arrest Merle Hay Mall Game Store Owner on Sex Abuse Charges
Des Moines police have charged the parents of nine children with abuse. The father, James Beaudrie, is reportedly the owner of Gamesip at Merle Hay Mall. The Des Moines Register reports he was arrested in Chicago this morning
Federal marshals have arrested a Des Moines man accused of sexually abusing three of his children while living with his family inside the store they owned at Merle Hay Mall, the Des Moines Register reports.
James Julius Beaudrie, 36, was captured in Chicago Thursday morning. He is charged with eight counts of third-degree sexual abuse, the newspaper said.
According to the U.S. Marshals Service, the Chicago apartment complex where Beaudrie was ultimately found might have been an address for his mother, the Register said.
Beaudrie fled through a rear door of the apartment moments before the arrest team entered the unit, officials said. Task force officers located Beaudrie after a short search of the area. He was attempting to hide under a stairwell of the apartment complex, authorities said.
Beaudrie will likely be taken to the Cook County Jail later today to await extradition to Iowa, the Register reports.
Our earlier story:
The Des Moines owners of a gaming business in Merle Hay Mall face charges of child neglect and sexual abuse, and police were putting the word out in Urbandale and throughout the area.
According to KCCI.com, Des Moines Police in November charged James Beaudrie with assault causing injury of his teenage daughter. The daughter ran away from home on Jan. 30, police said.
All nine of James and Kijua Beaudrie's children were placed in shelters or foster homes pending the investigation, the TV station reported.
On Monday, detectives arrested Kijua Beaudrie on charges of three counts of neglect of a dependent child. She was taken to the Polk County Jail.
Detectives said they have been unable to find James Beaudrie, who is wanted on eight counts of third-degree sexual abuse. According to KCCI, police detectives believe James Beaudrie fled the state; his van was found in Salt Lake City.
A statement Monday from Merle Hay Mall General Manager Joe Murdock said, "Our company is disturbed in hearing recent news about the owners of Gamesip. We strive to create a family-friendly atmosphere that puts safety first. To ensure the safety of all who enter our mall, we employ 24-hour security, intercommunication with our stores and parking lot security patrols.
"While we had no knowledge of the alleged events, this family strikes a chord with our organization," the mall said. "That said, we are cooperating with local and federal authorities."
Police are asking for the public's help in finding James Beaudrie. He is described as a white male, 6 feet 2 inches tall, 350 to 400 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. Anyone with information should contact the Des Moines Police Department at (515) 283-4832 or Polk County Crime Stoppers at (515) 223-1400.
Gamesip — described as a game and hobby store on its Facebook page — is located across from Hot Topic in the lower middle area in Merle Hay Mall.