Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Killeen Woman Sentenced to Federal Prison in Kidnapping Case

United States Attorney John E. Murphy and Cory B. Nelson, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation - San Antonio Division, announced that in Waco today, 34-year-old Courtney Elizabeth Hernandez, of Killeen, Texas, was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release and fined $3,000 in connection with the kidnapping of 2 ½-year-old girl in July of this year.

On October 14, 2010, Hernandez pleaded guilty to one count of kidnapping. By pleading guilty, Hernandez admitted that she kidnapped the child and transported her from Texas to North Carolina. According to court records, the child's mother, a soldier in the United States Army stationed at Fort Hood, left the child with Hernandez to babysit while she prepared for a military move to San Antonio. The child's mother gave the defendant permission to take the child to Teague, Texas, to go camping. On July 5, 2010, the child's mother contacted Hernandez to arrange to pick up her daughter. For several days after promising to return the child, Hernandez stalled and made excuses for not bringing the child home. On July 11, 2010, the child's mother notified the Federal Bureau of Investigation about the kidnapping. Later that day, after matching a description of the defendant's vehicle, Georgia State Patrol officers in Augusta arrested Hernandez and recovered the abducted child.

This case was investigated by special agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation together with the Temple Police Department, Teague (TX) Police Department, and the Georgia State Patrol. Assistant United States Attorney Greg Gloff prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

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