This story was corrected at 12:01 p.m., Sept. 4. An explanation follows the story.
Montgomery County police have arrested a Virginia man accused of kidnapping and soliciting sex from a 12-year-old Bethesda girl.
According to county police, for three months, Nathan Samuel Portnoy, 23, of the 2100 block of Emilys Lane in Falls Church, Va., had been carrying out a virtual relationship with the 12-year-old. Throughout that relationship, the 12-year-old portrayed herself as an adult during online conversations, and on Aug. 24, the two met and played soccer together at a park near the girl’s home, police said in a Friday news release.
Later that day, the two were allegedly driving in Portnoy’s vehicle to go to dinner when Portnoy stopped at the girl’s request and she got out of the vehicle. Family members of the victim were driving in the area at the time and noticed her get out and began following Portnoy’s vehicle.
County police allege that Portnoy then pointed a gun at the family members through his back vehicle window, which is when the family stopped pursuing Portnoy and called police.
County police identified Portnoy as the suspect through his vehicle records and obtained an arrest warrant.
On Aug. 25, Portnoy was arrested while driving his vehicle near his home in Virginia.
He is charged with first-degree assault, kidnapping of a child under 16 and sexual solicitation of a minor, county police said.
Following the arrest, county police searched Portnoy’s vehicle and recovered a loaded handgun, ammunition, gun holsters, handcuffs, zip ties, rope, a black ski mask and several boxes of condoms.
“Those items by themselves, many of those items by themselves have legal and useful purposes, taken together in circumstances that they were taken in, investigators believe this could’ve been of something he was planning to use against the 12-year-old or someone else in the future or possibly people in the past,” said Capt. Paul Starks.
Portnoy is currently being held in the Virginia correctional system while he is awaiting extradition to Montgomery County.
A phone number for Portnoy’s residence could not be located.
Correction: The initial story had the incorrect date of Nathan Samuel Portnoy’s arrest. He was arrested Aug. 25.