Missing Robeson County Toddler Found Unharmed, Returned Home
Posted April 21, 2004 9:46 a.m. EDT
PARKTON, N.C. — A 3-year-old Robeson County girl was reunited with her parents late Tuesday night after being abducted from the family's home almost 24 hours earlier.
Officials say Larry Lamar Nance is in custody and they are looking for three others.
Wanda Lee, 30, said four gunmen took her daughter, Jai-Mya Glover, from her bed around 12:40 a.m. Tuesday. Just before 11 p.m., they were reunited.
"It feels great. My baby is here, back home," Lee said.
Lt. Ken Sealey of the Robeson County Sheriff's Office said Jai-Mya was found just after 10 p.m. in Fayetteville, about 15 miles from her home.
"She was a little bit scared at first when we got her out of the car," U.S. Marshal Charles Reavis said.
Over the course of the day, Jai-Mya's father, Daryl Glover, 24, had received cell phone calls from the alleged abductors. Lee said during one call, their daughter spoke with Glover.
Investigators say they were able to find the alleged abductors by tracking their cell phone. Two men in a vehicle then led U.S. Marshals on a high-speed chase in and around Fayetteville.
"At one point in the chase the child was held out the window of the car," Reavis said.
The men eventually stopped the vehicle at the intersection of Odom and Redwood. They jumped out and ran until officers caught up with one of them.
"I've been in this business 36 years, and I've got to tell you, it got tense there for a little bit," Reavis said.
Authorities spent several hours interviewing Glover, who they say has a lengthy criminal record that includes violent crimes.
Investigators say neither Glover -- who was not home when Jai-Mya was taken -- nor Lee is a suspect. Officials declined to comment on a possible motive for the abduction.
Lee says she does not know the men, but said at some point during the day there were ransom demands.
The toddler's mother said four men kicked in the front door of her residence and took Jai-Mya out of her bed while holding Lee at gunpoint. The men drove away in a small dark-colored or burgundy vehicle, with silver or gold pinstripes.
"I was scared," Lee said. "I didn't know what was going on. Four men, with masks covering their faces and guns drawn. I mean, I was scared. I just yelled, 'Please don't hurt my baby.'"
The Robeson County Sheriff's Office contacted the North Carolina Center for Missing Persons before 9 a.m. to request an Amber Alert, which first was sent regionally to Cumberland, Hoke, Bladen, Sampson, Duplin, Robeson, Scotland, Columbus, Brunswick, New Hanover, Onslow and Pender counties.
The Amber Alert was supposed to be relayed from Raleigh to Fayetteville and Wilmington, but transmitters in those cities were not working.
Officials said the current system is outdated. The state hopes to have a new state-of-the art system running by September.
The Amber Alert was entered into the National Criminal Information Center and into the state Division of Criminal Information system for law enforcement. The alert expired six hours later, as the search continued.
The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division also was contacted.