Mississippi man Thomas Steven Sanders was arrested in Mississippi on Sunday in the kidnapping and murder of Las Vegas 12-year-old Lexis Roberts. Which must have come as a surprise to his family, who declared him dead in 1994.
According to the AP, a Mississippi court declared Sanders dead at the behest of his family after he abandoned them in 1987. Somehow, he managed to be arrested several times since then—for "possession of drug paraphernalia and a number of traffic and motor vehicle incidents," as well as "simple battery," for which he spent two years in a Georgia prison—without ever raising any red flags. According to CNN, he "is thought to be missing most of his teeth"
Police were able to find Sanders after seeing tape of him buying ammunition in Las Vegas consistent with the type that was used to shoot Roberts. Roberts' body was found in Louisiana in October; her mother (not a suspect, according to police) is still missing.