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Would-be kidnapper poses as social worker to abduct week-old baby from mom, cops say

A California woman was recently arrested for allegedly masquerading as a social worker in an attempt to kidnap a 1-week-old baby from their mother on Friday.

Though police haven’t publicly identified the 38-year-old suspect in custody, they alleged she approached the mother at her Santa Ana home and claimed she was a social worker named “Mayela Ortega” who was sent to take custody of her newborn child. Santa Ana police said the mother refused to hand over her baby when the suspect rebuffed her request to accompany her to the social services agency to get some clarity, according to The Washington Post.

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The mother, who wished to remain anonymous, told KABC that the suspect threatened to call the police if she didn’t relinquish her baby. “She didn’t have any ID, any picture with the name, with social service,” she recalled to KCAL.

The mom went on to tell KTLA that she still refused to give the suspect her baby even after she was threatened with arrest. The suspect allegedly left the scene but vowed to return with officers.

The suspect reportedly never returned but a Santa Ana Police Department spokesman told The Post on Monday that she was booked on attempted kidnapping charges after turning herself in. The circumstances surrounding her surrender are not yet clear.

Further, police revealed to KABC that they’re not releasing the woman’s identity because she’s possibly linked to similar incidents in Los Angeles and San Bernardino County.

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[Featured image: Santa Ana Police Department]