Florida Police Blame Human Smugglers for Kidnapping a 1-Month-Old Baby
FORT MYERS, Fla. – A missing month-old boy kidnapped at knifepoint was taken as payment because his parents failed to pay human smugglers, police said Saturday.
Bryan Dos Santos Gomes' parents were brought into the United States illegally from Brazil, but failed to pay the smugglers' entire fee, Fort Myers Police Chief Hilton Daniels said.
Bryan has been missing since Dec. 1 when he and his mother, Maria Fatima Ramos Dos Santos, as well as another woman and a baby, were approached by a woman driving a black sports utility vehicle. The women, who did not know the driver, agreed to give directions and entered the SUV with their children, police said.
Click here to see the suspect sketch
The driver later forced one mother and child out of the car, and made off with Ramos and her baby, police said. Ramos was released south of Fort Myers shortly afterward, but the woman in the SUV kept her baby.
Click here for more information from the Fort Myers police on the investigation
"We are still looking for this woman, but it is not a woman who desperately needed a baby," police spokeswoman Shelly Flynn said in a story posted on the News-Press Web site. "Now we are looking for a group of people."
Police initially reported the baby's name as Brayn. A spokesman for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement did not have any additional information about the case Saturday.
Local churches have posted a $21,000 reward for Bryan's return.
Click here to see photos of missing baby Bryan