Alleged child abductors caught

Two women, 29, 35, to be charged for series of abductions

NASSAU, BAHAMAS – Nearly two months after a boy was abducted while riding his bicycle in South Beach Estates, the first of six child abductions, authorities reported yesterday that they arrested a 29-year-old woman believed to be responsible for at least four of those incidents, and a 35-year-old woman who police believe acted as an accomplice in one abduction.

During a press conference Sunday at the Central Detective Unit (CDU) on Thompson Boulevard, Chief Superintendent Solomon Cash told the media that police arrested the 29-year-old in eastern New Providence on Saturday.

When questioned by authorities, she reportedly confessed to the abductions, according to Cash.

Her alleged accomplice in an early February abduction was arrested on Eleuthera yesterday.

Cash said the 35-year-old woman was being flown to New Providence.

He confirmed that police retrieved the suspected vehicle used in the abductions — a silver Nissan Tiida — which was being examined for additional evidence.

The women are expected to be charged sometime this week.

According to Cash, authorities consulted with the Director of Public Prosecutions, though he was unable to speak to the specific charges that could be brought against the alleged abductors.

“Let me say that since these incidents occurred, we were committed to our investigations,” Cash said.

“We opened a major incident room, which… comprised of various resources from within the police force, including technical and intelligence resources.

“With that, we were able to launch a full-scale investigation which led us to the point today, [where] we can be conclusive in saying that we suspect that both individuals we have in custody are responsible for these incidences.”

He continued, “From our investigation we can say that there was a nexus [among] four of those matters.”

Asked about the motive of the abductions, Cash said in each of the four connected cases, the children were left unattended and the suspect, and her accomplice, took advantage of the opportunity to take them.

“We suspect based on what we have before us is that — and I am giving you an account based on our intelligence — that these persons were left unattended and the suspect based on our information just took them away from their place of comfort with no intention of harming them,” he said.

Cash was also asked if the primary suspect had a history of mental illness.

While he could not speak to the psyche of the woman, Cash said there was no record of her being admitted to a mental institution.

Authorities did not provide the names of the women, and said the suspects were not known to police.

During the investigation, police issued several composite sketches based on victim and witness descriptions.

Cash thanked members of the public for their cooperation and assistance.

Yesterday, authorities were still searching for an additional suspect in connection with an early March abduction.

In that incident, a man walked into a Wilton Street home around 2:00 a.m. and took a six-year-old girl.

However, she was found unharmed a short while later.

A passerby spotted the girl in the area of Woodlawn Gardens graveyard, off Solider Road, and escorted her to the Wulff Road Police Station.

While the girl’s mother claimed her daughter was molested, authorities said there was no evidence to substantiate that claim.

Another abduction reportedly involved a relative and was domestically motivated, according to Cash.

He said that matter was closed.

Cash implored parents and guardians to supervise their children at all times and not leave them unattended for long periods of time.

Abductions

On February 16, 2019, two women in a silver-coloured vehicle abducted a three-year-old boy who was reportedly riding his bicycle outside his South Beach Estates home.

The boy was dropped off at a laundromat on Farringdon Road and Fox Hill Road the following day.

Another abduction was recorded on March 6.

Authorities reported a woman in a grey vehicle abducted a boy, eight, from a park near his home on Emmanuel Drive, off Soldier Road.

He was dropped off, this time near the entrance of the New Providence Landfill.

There were three more abductions on March 7.

According to police, three boys, ages 5, 8 and 10 were reportedly taken while walking in Kool Acres by a woman driving a dark-coloured vehicle.

The five-year-old and ten-year-old boys were returned to the same area, while the eight-year-old child was left near the entrance of the City Dump less than an hour later.

The latest abduction occurred on March 29, 2019.

A woman driving a silver vehicle stopped alongside two boys — ages eight and 10 — who were standing in front of their Collins Close home around 9:00 p.m.

According to authorities, the 10-year-old walked away, however, the woman successfully lured the other boy into her vehicle and drove off.

A short time later, the boy was released on Tonique Williams Darling Highway near the entrance of the New Providence Landfill before he was rescued and reunited with his family.