MANCHESTER — Manchester Police charged the parents of a two-year-old boy that was the subject of an Amber Alert with kidnapping charges Saturday.
Police said Erika Wallace, 26, of Raymond took her son, Joshua, 2, during a supervised visit at the Mall of New Hampshire in Manchester Friday afternoon.
An Amber Alert was issued and Tewksbury, MA Police located the targeted car Wallace had driven away from the mall near a Home Depot and Motel 6 parking lot on Main Street.
At the time, Tewksbury Police drug unit detectives were doing a surveillance of this location when they spotted the van and the license plate matched information from the Amber Alert, police officials said.
Tewksbury authorities then took Erika into custody along with the boy’s father, Joshua Wallace, 27, of Raymond and a third associate, Nicolette Russell, 24, of Georgetown.
The boy was found safe and in good health and returned to the custody of Department of Children, Youth and Families, police said.
Erika Wallace was charged with parental kidnapping, obstruction of justice and conspiracy. According to police, she was also arrested on the following warrants out of courts in Massachusetts: possession of a Class A substance, endangerment of a child, two separate counts of unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, obstruction of justice, refusal to identify self, lights violation, unregistered motor vehicle, furnishing a false name and Social Security Number, larceny under $250 and shoplifting.
Joshua Wallace was charged with parental kidnapping, obstruction of justice and conspiracy. He was also arrested on a Massachusetts court warrant for possession of a Class A substance and endangerment of a child, police said.
Russell was charged with obstruction of justice, providing a false name and Social Security number following an arrest and conspiracy.
Police said the car they were driving, a white 2003 Chrysler Town & Country minivan, had packed suitcases inside it.
Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas said it appeared a social worker who had been monitoring a visit for the Department of Children Youth and Families at the mall had become distracted.
“Apparently the youth services worker was on her phone and at that point the mother took the child and made a run for it,” Gatsas said.
Gov. Chris Sununu praised law enforcement officials for their quick response in locating the child, safe and sound.
State officials did not respond to requests for comment Saturday regarding the supervised visit.
Police located the mother and son less than an hour after the Amber Alert was issued.
Manchester Police Chief Nick Willard said he had called for additional police resources after the 3:45 p.m. incident.
“At this point all I can say is that our goal is to locate the child and ensure his safety. That’s our top priority,” Willard said prior to the child being found safe and sound.
According to the Amber Alert, authorities had cited two addresses where police thought the mother might have been heading, either to 476 Spruce St., Apt. 1 in Manchester or to 6 Deborah Ave. in Raymond.
If anyone has further information regarding this incident they should contact the Manchester Police Department at 603-668-8711.