A San Jose woman accused of kidnapping an 11 month old baby, who was a passenger in the back seat of the car she allegedly stole, appeared in court Monday.
Karla Hernandez has been charged with car theft, child endangerment, and kidnapping, stemming from the alleged abduction of Gabriella Quintero at 6:30 a.m. March 25.keys.jpg
The Jeep was taken after baby’s mother left the car momentarily unattended with the key in the ignition while she went to close the garage door. Prosecutors believe Hernandez knew the baby was inside of the car.
Authorities allege that once inside the car, she attempted to disable the mother’s cell phone in order to prevent tracking. Authorities claim she drove away, potentially stopped at a nearby laundromat, and then abandoned the car. The little girl was safely recovered and returned to her mother.
According to government officials, DNA and fingerprint evidence was gathered from the inside of the car. Hernandez was initially arrested in an unrelated case. It was subsequent to that arrest, on April 12, that officials connected her with these allegations.
California Penal Code Section 207, defines the crime of kidnapping. It carries potential imprisonment in state prison for a term of 3, 5, or 8 years. However, when the victim is younger than 14, the crime is punishable for 5, 8, or 11 years.
Although it wasn’t the case here, if a kidnapping is commited during the commission of a carjacking, provided that it is intentional and meets other requirements, it is potentially punishably by life in prison.
Car theft, on the other hand, which the woman here was charged with, means that an individual could face imprisonment in a county jail for up to one year, and/or a fine of up to $5,000.
Regarding the final charge, child endangerment, the potential punishment depends upon whether it is charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Misdemeanor child endangerment penalties include up to one year in county jail. Felony child endangerment sentences can be two, four, or six years in California state prison.
If you or loved ones has been accused of car theft, kidnapping, child endangerment, or any other crime in Santa Clara or San Mateo County, call our experienced Bay Area criminal defense attorneys today. Even if formal charges have not yet been brought but law enforcement want to speak with you, it is in your best interests to hire an attorney. Do not speak with a detective, investigator or police officer before speaking to one of our experienced attorneys. Call us today at (415) 946-4020 in order to schedule your initial consultation. You can also contact us through our website.