Man arrested in assault of 12-year-old Fort Worth girl walking to school

Image 1 of 8

Police have arrested a suspect for the attack on a 12-year-old girl who was on her way to school in Fort Worth.

Terry Wayne King was arrested on Tuesday in Oklahoma after and has been charged with injury to a child. Officials said they still don't have a motive for the violent attack.

The attack happened on April 19 in far west Fort Worth. The girl, a student at Internationally Newcomer Academy, was approached by an unknown man as she was walking from her home to a bus stop across the street from Western Hills Elementary.

The girl's father said she told him in the moments after the attack that a man grabbed and choked her. Her condition prevented investigators from talking to her about what happened.

Fort Worth police said they arrested King after detectives traced a license plate from a road rage assault back to King's car. Police did not reveal how they obtained the license plate information.

King's arrest gives the girl's father some relief, but his daughter has been hospitalized since the attack. He says the injuries from the attack were so severe she is now in need of a heart transplant.

"The heart is not working good, lungs not working, lungs working a little bit,” said father Twizere Buhinja. “She has a matching for her heart waiting for a heart transplant.”

Police say there is no evidence the girl was sexually assaulted or that she has any connection to King. The family are refugees from the Republic of Congo. Detectives say the girl's spirit drove them to solve this case.

“She was an inspiration to find a resolve to this case this was a senseless act, a violent act on her,” said Fort Worth Police Det. Pat Henz.

The Fort Worth Police Department released surveillance images of a man who was seen in the area around the time of the attack. He could be seen walking in through the parking lot of a nearby motel, going into a convenience store to shave and then calling someone to pick him up.

Detectives say King lived in the same neighborhood as the 12-year-old girl at the time of the attack, but moved out of Fort Worth soon after police started putting out the surveillance video.

Investigators fear there may be other victims since King was a truck driver and traveled through several states.

"If he has had contact with anybody else prior to this attack happened we would be happy to hear from you come forward and hear what's happened to you,” said FWPD Det. Amelia Heise.

Because of the girl's severe injuries, detectives have still not sat down to get a full description of what happened.