A Kansas woman was arrested after she allegedly tried to kidnap a metro Atlanta couple’s children at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport on Saturday morning.
Police said the Lithia Springs family was walking through the atrium when they were approached by 26-year-old Esther Daniels. The woman allegedly tried to grab a stroller carrying the family’s youngest child, a baby girl, before being fended off by the child’s mother.
Surveillance video released Tuesday by Atlanta police appeared to show the family pass by Daniels, who was standing alone in the atrium. She sidled up to the mother while the father walked about 10 feet away, pushing a toddler in another stroller.
The father stopped walking when the woman grabbed onto the handle of the stroller and did not appear to let go. He then walked over to his wife, their baby and their oldest son.
At that point, the woman is shown in the video picking up the 6-year-old boy and trying to walk away. Both father and mother struggled to pry the boy from her arms, and Daniels was eventually chased off by an airport worker.
The mother then started screaming for help, according to a police report obtained by AJC.com.
An Atlanta police officer responded a few minutes later and found Daniels in a frenzied mental state, the officer said in the report. She was speaking unintelligibly on her cellphone and tried to pass the phone to the officer before darting toward the Lithia Springs family again.
The officer had to physically restrain the woman, according to the report.
“Ms. Daniels continued to fight to make her way back toward the kids and I had to bring Ms. Daniels down toward the ground to keep her from getting back toward the victims,” the officer said.
It took three officers to get the woman under control, and she was eventually put in a wheelchair to be escorted to the airport police precinct. The children were not injured, police said.
Daniels was checked out at Grady Memorial Hospital before being arrested on charges of kidnapping and obstructing an officer. She is being held without bond in the Clayton County Jail.
Daniels is scheduled to appear before a Clayton County judge for a preliminary hearing July 11.
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