A mother from Colorado tracked her son’s molester to Mexico and, with the help of the FBI, had him brought back to the U.S.
When Andrew Vanderwal didn’t show up for a court date to face sexual assault charges against 6 victims in 2017, Lydia Lerma took matters into her own hands.
According to KDVR, Vanderwall posted bond and then disappeared.
“Law enforcement basically had told me to cool my jets and to let them do their damn jobs,” Lerma said.
Lerma posted her story online and got a tip from a family in Mexico.
She said the initial plan was to meet with Mexican officials to have Vanderwal arrested, but after the FBI advised her against it, she went to Mexico herself to find him.
There, she says, she found him in a parking lot with kids in his car.
“The emotions were overwhelming,” Lerma said. There was part of me that wanted to jump out and grab him myself and handle the situation. There was part of me that wanted to kill him.”
Lerma let the FBI know that she had found him, and a month later he was arrested and extradited to the U.S.
Vanderwal was sentenced Friday to 24 years to life in prison.
Lerma says her son is the bravest little person she’s ever met, and he’s doing really well.