Police in Washington have asked California authorities to cancel an AMBER Alert for a non-custodial mother and her 4-year-old daughter as they believe the pair have made their way to Mexico.
KOIN reported that Esmeralda Lopez-Lopez took Aranza Ochoa Lopez during a supervised visit at the Vancouver Mall on Thursday. Now, police believe the mother and daughter traveled to Mexico in a stolen red Chevy Cobalt with Washington license plates BLK1552.
According to the news station, Lopez-Lopez told the Child Protective Services worker that she was taking her daughter to the bathroom but instead fled the mall. It allegedly took the agency four hours to report the alleged abduction to law enforcement.
The stolen car was reportedly spotted in California, leading authorities there to issue an AMBER Alert. A Vancouver official confirmed to KATU that, despite the alert, the pair managed to cross the U.S.-Mexico border.
KATU also reported that the stolen vehicle belongs to Jose Orellana-Gomez, 23, an acquaintance of Lopez-Lopez. He claimed Lopez-Lopez called him over to her apartment and she asked him to give her a ride to Centralia, Washington. Once there, he said he was met by three men who tied him to a chair and demanded the PIN to his bank card. He reportedly freed himself and called authorities.
***This AMBER Alert has been deactivated at the request of the Vancouver WA Police Department. The suspect and victim are believed to be in Mexico.*** https://t.co/EMZwMcDbQA
— CHP – Alerts (@CHPAlerts) October 29, 2018
On Sunday, someone reportedly spotted Lopez-Lopez, her daughter, and a female teenager who was with them at the mall Thursday driving the victim’s car in Central California. This was the same day police arrested Erick Garcia-Valdovinos, 18, and charged him with two counts of kidnapping and one count of robbery.
KOIN reported that Garcia-Valdovinos’ bail was set to $200,000 on Monday. Police are looking for two men as they investigate the kidnapping and robbery.
Ochoa Lopez has been in foster care since last year; police worry for the child’s safety given her mother’s history. However, it’s unclear what led the state to take custody of the 4-year-old.
Ochoa Lopez was described as having blond hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing a long-sleeved dark blue shirt with a bulldog on the front, pink pants, and Paw Patrol shoes.
Lopez-Lopez was described as being 5-feet-tall, 138 pounds, and having black hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing a red and white striped soccer jersey.
Anyone with information regarding the pair’s whereabouts is urged to call 911.
[Featured Image: Aranza Ochoa Lopez, Esmeralda Lopez-Lopez/Vancouver Police Department]