2nd Person Arrested in Kidnapping of Toddler in Florida Keys

Florida deputies have arrested a second person after a hotel employee kidnapped a co-worker’s toddler earlier this week.

The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office said Friday that Jan Hans Gasperik, 49, has been charged with child neglect and kidnapping, the same charges faced by Zita Gasperik, also 49, when she was arrested on Wednesday.

The sheriff’s office didn’t say if the Gasperiks were arrested at the same time or how they were related.

As CrimeOnline previously reported, deputies were called to the Fairfield Inn & Suites in Marathon at about 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday by a mother who said that Zita Gasperik, a co-worker at the hotel, had taken her 16-month-old child after talking about how cute the baby was and talking a picture.

She also said, “This baby is mine today,” the mother said.

Gasperik took the child to a breakfast room, but when the mother went to get the toddler back, both were gone.

Sheriff’s office spokesman Adam Linhardt said deputies found Gasperik traveling on US 1 not long afterward and pulled her over. She had the 16-month-old in her lap, Linhardt said.

They did not say until Friday that Jan Hans Gasperik was driving the vehicle, and Zita Gasperik was sitting in the passenger seat with the toddler on her lap.

Linhardt said the child was unharmed but was unrestrained in the vehicle as it made its way through more dangerous than normal conditions because of the proximity of Hurricane Ian, according to WPLG.

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[Featured image: Jan Hans Gasperik and Zita Gasperik/Monroe County Sheriff’s Office]