NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. – Authorities in New Jersey charged a man Thursday with kidnapping in the case of a 20-month-old child found abandoned at a gas station in Delaware over the weekend.
Dwayne Jackson of Edison also was charged with endangering the welfare of a child by the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office. He was being held in lieu of $750,000 bail. Jackson also faces a separate reckless endangerment charge in Delaware.
The child was found Sunday afternoon in the bathroom of a Shell service station in Newark, Del., by a stranger who heard her crying. A photograph of the toddler was distributed, and she was identified as Jackson's daughter.
The child had been living with her mother, who has not been identified, in North Brunswick, the prosecutor's office said. the child was placed in the custody of Delaware's Division of Family Services and was in good health.
The prosecutor's office also is investigating the death of a young woman whose burning body was found in a park in Ramapo, N.Y., about 25 miles northwest of New York City. Jim O'Neill, a prosecutor's office spokesman, did not say whether the woman is believed to be the baby's mother.
The woman's dead body was found on fire early Monday. Ramapo Police Detective Lt. Brad Weidel said the woman was black or Hispanic and was about 5-foot-2 and weighed about 120 pounds. She had recently undergone gallbladder surgery, he said, and had a tattoo on her back that read "Patricia" and included the picture of a rose.
The child's home in North Brunswick is about 100 miles north of Newark, Del., where she was found, and about 65 miles south of Ramapo.