January 30, 1998 in Nation/World

Newborn Stolen From Hospital Couple Arrested, Baby Found 24 Hours Later

Patrice Gravino Associated Press
 

A couple who allegedly stole a newborn from her sleeping mother in a maternity ward were arrested late Thursday as they walked into a house with the baby 250 miles away.

The baby appeared to be in good condition, an FBI agent said.

Nearly 24 hours after the baby was taken from the University of Kansas Medical Center, the two suspects were arrested at the home of a family member in the city of High Ridge, near St. Louis, said David Tubbs, in charge of the Kansas City’s FBI office.

The suspects were identified as Buddy Hall, 30, and Amanda Tull, 18, from northwest Missouri. They were being held on kidnapping charges.

Tubbs said FBI agents - two of them emergency medical technicians - had been waiting at the home for three or four hours and arrested the pair as they walked in.

Tull allegedly went into the room of Trish Nicole Shockey, 19, and told her about a drawing for free baby clothes. After a brief conversation, the mother - who had been sedated earlier - fell asleep, and Tull allegedly abducted her hours-old newborn, identified only as Carlie.

Hall allegedly told other visitors that he was hanging around the maternity ward because his wife had had triplets, the FBI said.

Around 11 p.m. Wednesday, a camera recorded the couple leaving the hospital with a baby in an infant carrier.

“It seemed to be a planned operation, obviously, but we don’t know if they were specifically going for this baby or any baby they could reasonably get out of the hospital,” FBI spokesman Jeff Lanza said before the arrests.

Hours before the abduction, a security camera caught the suspects hanging around at North Kansas City (Mo.) Hospital.

“It’s clearly the same suspects,” Lanza said.


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