Police hunt for woman who allegedly kidnapped a 3-year-old boy in Port Elizabeth

Police in Port Elizabeth is on the hunt for a woman who allegedly kidnapped a 3-year-old boy on Friday afternoon, 4 January 2019, from a beach in Port Elizabeth.

According to police information, the child Nefrin Lucraine Roberts was at the beach in Summerstrand (near Something Good) with his grandmother, Lucinda Roberts (52). They were waiting for the child’s mother. While there, a woman introduced herself as Meagan from Shauderville struck up a conversation with the grandmother and after a while both women went across to the nearby shopping centre to buy liquor.

They went back to the beach and waited for the child’s mother who never arrived.  The two women stayed on the beach and a while later (about 18:00) ‘Meagan’ went back to the shopping centre to buy cigarettes. She took the child with her and never returned.

The incident was reported to police on Saturday, 5 January 2019.

At the time, the child was wearing a grey sweater and blue shorts. The child is from Hibiscus Street, Ext 31 in Bethelsdorp.

‘Meagan” is about 25-30 years old, dark in complexion and is fluent in Afrikaans and English. She has a tattoo on her arm and ankle (design unknown) and may possibly be from Shauderville. At the time of the kidnapping she was wearing a pink striped top with pink jeans and black takkies. A scarf was tied around her hair.

Police have retrieved CCTV footage at the Pick ‘n Pay centre where she took the child.

The Family Violence Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit in Port Elizabeth is investigating a case of Kidnapping. Police is appealing to the communities to assist in tracing the woman and the child.  Capt Machewula may be contacted on 071 352 4644 alternatively the nearest police station may be contacted.

UPDATE

PE Family Violence Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit arrested a 25-year-old woman in a shack in Victoria Park Drive this morning.

The investigating officer, Capt Nomawethu Machewula received several calls from the public about possible sightings of the suspect and the child. At about 10:45, a team of detectives including the commander from the FCS unit were making enquiries in the vicinity in Victoria Park Drive when they made a breakthrough. The child, Nefrin Lucarine Roberts was found with the suspect in a shack deep in the bushes in Victoria Park Drive.

According to the homeless woman, she alleged that when she returned with the child after going to the shop, she could not find the grandmother so she took the child with her. She could not give a reasonable explanation as to why she didn’t contact police,

The child was taken to Dora Nginza hospital for a medical examination and apart from been malnourished, he was fine. He has been re-united with his family.

The suspect is detained on a charge of kidnapping and will appear in the Port Elizabeth magistrates’ court on Monday, 7 January 2019.

Police would like to express their appreciation and gratitude to the community and media for their unwavering assistance.

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