Texas authorities and the FBI arrest a woman and a minor for allegedly kidnapping a baby in Florida
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An El Paso woman and a minor were arrested Monday after law enforcement determined they kidnapped the 18-month-old baby from a Florida mother.
Jenna Roark, 45, and a 15-year-old boy are charged with human trafficking and aggravated kidnapping.
Special agents from the Criminal Investigations Division (CID) of the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) arrested the couple on Monday with the help of the Texas Highway Patrol, the US Border Patrol (USBP) and the FBI.
The charges stem from a September 16 traffic stop, according to a DPS press release. Soldiers discovered that Roark and the minor were smuggling illegal immigrants while traveling with an unidentified 18-month-old baby, DPS said.
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DPS said the child was in poor health and was taken to a local hospital for treatment. He was later turned over to child protective services while investigators tried to determine his identity.
On Monday, FBI El Paso alerted DPS CID agents to a mother in St. Petersburg, Florida who reported her baby was being held for ransom. Investigators determined her baby was the same 18-month-old found in the traffic stop.
The DPS, FBI, and USBP tracked down Roark and the miner and arrested them. They were incarcerated in El Paso County Jail and El Paso County Juvenile Probation. Their relationship was not immediately clear.
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« To be caught up in a kidnapping for ransom (KFR) extortion incident is frightening, but when the subject kidnaps a small child as collateral until the parent pays for his services, it is totally inhumane and without heart, » FBI El Paso Special Agent in Charge Jeffery R. Downey said in a statement.