Seagoville police: Abduction, Amber Alert of East Texas girls a hoax

Seagoville police: Abduction, Amber Alert of East Texas girls a hoax
Jose Penaloza-Estrada, 20, of Plano (Source: Seagoville Police Department)

TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Surveillance video corroborates tips that the reported abduction of two East Texas girls was planned and staged and the girls were not in any distress, according to detectives with the Seagoville Police Department.

Sunday at approximately 8:00 p.m., the Seagoville Police Department received a report of two missing teenage females from the Seagoville Trade Days flea market. The girls came to the flea market with a friend of one’s family. Once at the flea market, they separated from the adult and were last accounted for in the early afternoon. Both girls were from East Texas and were schoolmates. At closing, neither of the girls could be located and did not respond to call attempts to summon them to leave for home.

Around 11:30 p.m. that night, one of the girls placed an alarming phone call to her mother. This call led the mother to believe that the girls were abducted from the flea market, were being held against their will and were in grave danger. The phone call originated from a motel located in Dallas. The context of this phone call was soon relayed to the Seagoville Police Department, who contacted Dallas police to go to the location. However, upon police arriving the missing girls were not located. An Amber Alert was activated.

On Monday morning, Seagoville detectives obtained surveillance video of the girls in the area of this overnight originating phone call. Video depicted both girls in the company of two young males on Sunday evening. From video obtained, there was no expressed actions from the group that the girls were in any distress. The video served to corroborate tips that the girls had planned a staged abduction early on from the flea market to be in the company of the young males.

Further investigation led to the identity of one of the males. He was believed to be Jose Penaloza-Estrada, 20, of Plano. On Monday afternoon, Penaloza-Estrada was located in Northeast Dallas alone. Interviews reveal that Penaloza-Estrada had rented a motel room earlier this date in Plano. Officers went to the motel and discovered the females alone in the motel room. They were both unharmed.

The investigation concluded that the alleged abduction of the girls was a pre-planned hoax. Jose Penaloza-Estrada was aware of the girls being a subject of an Amber Alert and their Missing Person status. He was arrested and charged with Harboring Runaway Child. Additional charges may follow.


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