Elizabeth Thomas’ father believes that 50-year-old Tad Cummins is a kidnapper — despite the claim by the former teacher’s lawyer that he didn’t force or coerce the 15-year-old teenage girl to flee with him from Tennessee for more than a month.
He called Cummins a poor excuse for a teacher and authority figure and a father. He also called him a poor excuse for a human being.
Anthony Thomas said this ordeal has been the worst experience of his life.
“I don’t care who you are, who you think you are, he did not ask me if he could take my child,” the father said. “My child at 15 [years old] is not able to make a decision for herself that she is going to take off somewhere across the country, no matter what world he lives in.”
On Monday, Cummins’ public defender issued a statement defending his client, claiming he has “no history of violence and no criminal history whatsoever.” That statement also claims that Cummins did not coerce, force or threaten the teen girl.
Cummins faces kidnapping and sex crime charges in California and Tennessee in addition to a federal charge.
According to an ABC News report, the father also said that Cummins wasn’t feeding his daughter enough and she lost a substantial amount of weight. Instead of eating full meals, the dad claims, Cummins fed the teen flowers.
Anthony Thomas told People he is anxious about being in the same courtroom as Cummins. He is worried about how he will react.
“I’ll become emotionally charged and, yeah, I’d like to do to him … what every other father would like to do in the same situation.”
But, he said at the end of the day, he will put faith and trust in the authorities.
“We can’t just go grabbing people as a mob, because then we’re not civilized anymore. We’re not better than he is.”
[NBC News & Tenneesee Bureau of Investigation]
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxgen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.