1 charged in abduction of girl from Philly school
- Associated Press
- February 15, 2013 - 5:56 AM
PHILADELPHIA - A 19-year-old daycare worker was charged in the abduction of a 5-year-old girl from her Philadelphia elementary school last month, authorities said.
Special Victims Unit Capt. John Darby says Christina Regusters was charged Thursday night with kidnapping, conspiracy, aggravated assault, rape, and other offenses. She was one of four people questioned Thursday who live in a home several blocks from Bryant Elementary School in west Philadelphia. The other three were released.
Darby said Regusters worked at an after-school care program attended by the victim, who was taken out of her classroom Jan. 14 by a woman posing as her mother. The child was found early the next morning at a playground about a mile away, wearing only a T-shirt.
"The investigation is very much active and ongoing," Darby said at a news conference Thursday.
A telephone listing for Regusters could not be located. An attorney who was representing her could not immediately be reached by The Associated Press. But the attorney, W. Fred Harrison Jr., told WCAU-TV Regusters had "no involvement" in the crime.
The investigation has been unfolding since a woman wearing a black Muslim garment, her face covered by a veil, posed as the girl's mother and took her out of class, officials said. The victim's mother wears the traditional chador and niqab.
Investigators believe the suspect and victim walked a few blocks to a home where a man was waiting. The child was blindfolded, told to remove her clothes and put on a black, adult-sized T-shirt, and then ordered to hide under a bed, authorities said. She was apparently dumped about 18 hours later at a park about a mile from her school, just outside the city, and was found by a passer-by, shivering under playground equipment.
When she was found, the girl told her rescuer, "I've been stolen."
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