Police in Missouri discover teen kidnapped 13 years ago in Florida

Sept. 23, 2013 at 2:17 PM
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CHILLICOTHE, Mo., Sept. 23 (UPI) -- A Missouri woman faces charges for allegedly abducting a child in Florida 13 years ago after she tried enrolling the now-teen in middle school, police said.

Sandy Hatte, 60, is accused of abducting the child in Florida as an infant in 2000. Police said the then-baby's father was related to Hatte -- they haven't said how -- and that he came home from work one day to find Hatte and the baby gone.

Hatte and the child turned up in Livingston County, Mo., where Hatte tried enrolling the child in school. Workers there became suspicious of Hatte's story and questioned whether she was the child's actual mother.

Investigators for the Livingston County Sheriff's Department looked into the case and discovered the child had been reported missing years earlier.

Police reunited the birth father with his child shortly after Hatte's arrest Wednesday, ABC News reported Sunday. Livingston County sheriff's investigator Eric Menconi said.

"It was a good reunion," Menconi said. "You could tell within the first 3 minutes they hit it off pretty well. Since then, I've been on the phone with the dad and from what I'm understanding, it's going pretty well."

Hatte was being held on a kidnapping charge in the Davvies-Dekalb Regional Jail in Pattonsburg, Mo., in lieu of $25,000 bail.

Menconi said the child was never considered in danger during the years-long ordeal. Police said Hatte and the child moved around the country frequently to avoid being caught.

The child's name and gender, the father's name and where they currently live are not being disclosed for security reasons, police said.

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