Babysitter accused of kidnapping infant, taking her to Alabama

Javeele Thomas
Javeele Thomas

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – An endangered child alert for a missing Nashville infant was cancelled Sunday after she was found in Alabama, and her babysitter was charged with kidnapping.

The child’s parents told Metro police their infant daughter, 4-month old Jalayia Gonzalez, and her babysitter, 22-year-old Javeele Thomas, were missing from their Chimney Top Drive home in Antioch.

Jalayia Gonzalez
Jalayia Gonzalez

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation issued an endangered missing child alert until the two were found hours later in Lineville, Alabama, over 280 miles south of Nashville.

In a release Monday, Alabama police say Thomas was pulled over in a car driven by a male with the baby inside. The baby was safe and being well-cared for.

However, the male driver was under the impression the child was his and Thomas was the mother.

Chief Monty Giddens with the Lineville Police Department states, “Come to find out, Ms. Thomas had told her boyfriend back in May or June 2014 that she was pregnant and he was the father. Around October, she lost the child and broke contact with the father in November. She re-established contact with the father, telling him she was out of town and that she had had the baby.”

He continues, “She made arrangements to babysit Jalayia and meet her boyfriend, and she presented Jalayia to him as their child. Ms. Thomas, Jalayia and the driver who thought he was a new dad headed to Lineville to see his family.”

Chief Giddens also noted that the mother of the infant hadn’t been able to get in touch with Thomas since she got the baby last Thursday, so both were reported missing to Nashville police.

Thomas has since been charged with second degree kidnapping and released on $20,000 bond.

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