Reporting Rachel Slavik
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Hennepin County Attorney filed charges against a Twin Cities woman accused of kidnapping her friend’s baby.
Thalia Tonice Benson, 34, faces one felony count of kidnapping in connection to the Tuesday incident.
Earlier Tuesday morning, 2-month-old Elijah Alonzo went missing from his home.
Elijah’s mother, Christina Alonzo, told authorities Benson was over at her Brooklyn Park home the night before. Alonzo told authorities she fell asleep on the couch, but awoke around 1:30 a.m. to find that both her child and Benson were gone.
The criminal complaint says Alonzo called Benson who denied knowing where the baby was located. A short time later, Benson arrived at the apartment to help search for the child.
Alonzo then called 911 and police questioned Benson.
Benson’s relatives eventually became suspicious of her possible involvement and called police. The child was found in a vehicle outside Benson’s apartment with Benson’s boyfriend.
The boyfriend told police that Benson had convinced him that she was pregnant and the baby was his child. He also gave police text messages from Benson detailed a fake pregnancy and birth.
The criminal complaint says Benson admitted that she made her boyfriend believe that she had actually given birth to the missing child.
If convicted, Benson could face up to 40 years in prison.
Alonzo told WCCO Wednesday night that she will remain friends with Benson.