Boy Told to Get in Car and Follow Mom's Boyfriend

An 11-year-old boy's California highway drive landed his mother's boyfriend in jail, with investigators saying that the man coaxed the youngster to follow him through the Mojave Desert.

San Bernardino sheriff's officials said Wednesday that 51-year-old Terry Michael Varner was charged with willful cruelty to a child resulting in possible injury or death.

He was arrested Sunday and remained jailed with bail set at $100,000.

Sheriff's spokeswoman Jodi Miller says dispatchers were notified at about 12:52 p.m. Sunday of a reckless driver, and some callers said a child was behind the wheel.

A deputy pulled the car over, and another vehicle in front of the child driver also pulled over. But a sheriff's report says that vehicle quickly left.

Authorities say they later discovered Varner was behind the wheel of the second vehicle.