California baby kidnapping suspects arrested, one is family friend: cops

California authorities said one suspect is a family friend, police said

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Northern California authorities have identified three suspects they say kidnaped a 3-month-old baby from an apartment as his grandmother was unloading groceries from her vehicle and one of them is a family friend, they said Wednesday. 

The suspects were identified as Jose Roman Portillo, 28, Yesenia Guadalupe Ramirez, 43, and 37-year-old Baldomeo Sandoval, all San Jose residents. All were in custody Wednesday and face charges of kidnapping, child abduction and home invasion, the San Jose Police Department said.

San Jose Police Sgt. Christian Camarillo called the arrests a "triumphant" moment for the police department and community. 

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Jose Roman Portillo, 28, Yesenia Guadalupe Ramirez, 43, and 37-year-old Baldomeo Sandoval, have been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of a 3-month-old California boy. Brandon Cuellar was found hours later and reunited with his mother. 

Jose Roman Portillo, 28, Yesenia Guadalupe Ramirez, 43, and 37-year-old Baldomeo Sandoval, have been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of a 3-month-old California boy. Brandon Cuellar was found hours later and reunited with his mother.  (San Jose Police Department )

"I grew up in an era where missing kids ended up on milk cartons and were never found, and who knows whatever happened to them," he said during a news conference. 

The infant, Brandon Cuellar, was found in Portillo's home Tuesday unharmed after an intense search and was reunited with his mother and grandmother, authorities said. 

Investigators said Ramirez is a family friend and had taken the baby and his grandmother to run errands before the alleged abduction. She was detained because she kept changing her version of events during police interviews, said Camarillo. 

A motive for the alleged kidnapping is still under investigation, he said. 

Portillo was identified as the person seen on surveillance footage walking on the street holding a child seat on his way to the residence to take the child, authorities said. His connection to Cuellar was not clear. 

"It's a clear indication that this was pre-planned, pre-meditated," Camarillo said. "They had a plan they executed that day."

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Sandoval's connection to the alleged kidnapping plot was not disclosed. All three are expected to appear in court Thursday.