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Woman pleads guilty to 1987 hospital baby kidnap

Carlina White solved her own kidnapping when she was 23 years old after searching for her birth cert.

Undated photo of Ann Pettway.
Undated photo of Ann Pettway.
Image: AP Photo/NC Department of Correction/PA Images

A WOMAN accused of kidnapping a 19-day-old baby from a Manhattan hospital over 20 years ago has pleaded guilty in a New York court.

The baby had been taken to Harlem Hospital by her parents on 4 August 1987 with a fever and was admitted. According to the FBI, hospital staff noticed she was missing in the early hours of the following day.

Years later, the victim of the kidnapping, Carlina White, discovered that she had been snatched from the hospital as an infant.

White had asked Pettway, who had raised her, for her birth cert and other documents ahead of the birth of her own child. However, she was told there was no birth cert because she had been given to Pettway by a drug abuser.

In January 2010, White contacted the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children in the belief that an image on their database resembled her. The organisation put her in touch with the parents whose daughter was taken from Harlem Hospital and DNA samples later confirmed that they were her biological parents.

Appearing in court yesterday, Pettway confessed to taking White from the hospital as a baby. The FBI says that she told their agents that she had suffered several miscarriages before the abduction.

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If convicted, Pettway could face a maximum sentence of life in prison. ABC News reports that White does not have a relationship with her birth parents and that her father Carl Tyson called for Pettway to serve 23 years – the length of time their daughter was missing.

Read: Baby snatched from hospital 23 years ago reunited with mother >

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