MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Police say the missing 8-month-old boy, believed to be abducted from his home on Wednesday, has been found safe and the suspect is in custody.
Authorities said the boy was believed to be abducted around 11:55 a.m. Wednesday while the mother, Victoria Orozco, was taking a shower in her apartment on the 2100 block of Portland Avenue South. The boy was returned to the family around 4:15 p.m.
Orozco said her heart “made a turn” when she learned her son, Carlos Orozco, was fine.
“It felt a lot better knowing that he was OK, he was fine, that there was nothing wrong with him,” she said.
Orozco told police she left the child in his car seat inside the apartment. When she got out of the shower, Carlos was gone.
Police initially said this was a stranger abduction but later said that was not true.
They were looking for a woman named Isabel Diaz-Castilla. She recently met Orozco at a laundromat a few months ago and became infatuated with Carlos. Police believe she grabbed him around noon.
“There was a vibe about [Diaz-Castilla] when I first met her,” Orozco said. “Something was wrong.”
Police also learned that Diaz-Castilla has a 12-year-old boy. Officers believe Diaz-Castilla’s son entered the apartment shortly before the abduction.
Just before 4 p.m., police received an anonymous 911 tip directing officers to a residence on the 3700 block of 3rd Avenue South. Outside the home was Diaz-Castilla’s red 2012 Kia Sportage. The child was located inside the home in the basement.
Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau said Diaz-Castilla was spotted in her car and attempted to flee. Officers caught her, and she was placed under arrest.
Diaz-Castilla was booked into the Hennepin County Jail on kidnapping and burglary charges.
“I love happy endings and cases like this don’t usually have happy endings,” she said. “This was clearly a case of really good police work. Our investigators and our patrol officers worked together to identify locations where the suspect may go. After checking a few of those, one of the last ones, of course, found the vehicle and the suspect bailed from the vehicle, ran into the home and the child was found in the basement of the home.”
Police say the residence belongs to a relative of Diaz-Castilla.
An Amber Alert was issued during the boy’s disappearance but has since been canceled.
The child was medically evaluated as a precaution but has since been reunited with his mother.
The abduction happened in the city’s 3rd precinct, which covers the area south of Interstate 94 and east of Interstate 35W.
The incident is still under investigation.