New mother says couple tried to kidnap baby

By Layron Livingston - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - email

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Casey Bradford and Ashley Harris, both 19, are in the Smith County Jail after allegedly trying to kidnap a two-week old boy. Police say the alleged near-abduction had been in the works for days. For the first time, the child's mother shared her story.

"The way he barged in here, it kind of scared me," said the new mother.

Two week old Jaqualin is Tyequisha Johnson's first bundle of joy.

"First and last," said Tyequisha. "I'm not having any more."

A stranger came to her door earlier this week.

"He opened up the tablet and he was like, 'Is your name Tyequisha?' and I was like, 'Yeah.'"

Police say, on Monday, Casey Bradford actually entered the victim's home posing as a Department of Human Services official. He actually told her that he wanted to remove the baby from the home because of some ongoing investigation, and that's what sent off the red flags.

Johnson called police who later found out Bradford was working with Ashley Harris. Johnson says she first met Harris inside her Mother Frances hospital room after her son was born.

"She came in a nurse outfit," said Tyequisha. "She kind of eased her way on in by saying he was so cute. She was like, her sister baby had died and that had a whole lot of boy clothes that she wanted to give me, so we exchanged numbers."

Johnson says the suspect called pretty much everyday.

"I'm going to bring the clothes, [she would say,]'" explained Tyequisha. "'Are you going to be at home?"

Then, she says Bradford asked a very suspicious question.

"When CPS come to get a baby, what do you do?" said Tyequisha. "So I was like, I don't know. So I guess that gave her the cue to try this on me."

"Do we have any idea as to what they were going to do with this child should they have taken it?" I asked officer Don Martin.

"[We] have no idea," said Martin. "What we did learn was that the suspect, female, had lost a child due to a miscarriage."

"This type of scenario...walking in and setting up for, we have not seen that before," said Mother Frances' security manager Robert Graham.

He says he's working to keep it from happening again.

"We consider this a paramount circumstance that we must maintain the safety and security of the children," said Graham.

The bond between mother and son is forever strengthened.

"I gotta keep a close eye on him now...I don't even let him get out of my sight," said Tyequisha.

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