UPDATE: Trial for West Virginia mom in false abduction case pushed to 2020

UPDATE: CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – A trial has been delayed for a West Virginia woman charged with making up a story about foiling the attempted kidnapping of her daughter.

The Huntington Herald-Dispatch reports 24-year-old Santana Renee Adams’ trial on a charge of falsely reporting an emergency incident has been moved to January. It had been set to start this week. Adams was initially hailed as a hero after claiming she used a gun to thwart the attempted kidnapping of her 5-year-old at a mall in April.

Her story quickly unraveled when no witnesses were found and surveillance video didn’t support her claims. She had provided vivid detail about the man in the attack, saying an Egyptian man had tried to drag her daughter away by her hair. That man was swiftly arrested and later released.

Information from: The Herald-Dispatch, http://www.herald-dispatch.com

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UPDATE: CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia woman is due in court on a charge of falsely reporting to police that an Egyptian man tried to kidnap her daughter from a shopping mall.

The Huntington Herald-Dispatch reports 24-year-old Santana Renee Adams is expected to appear Monday on the misdemeanor charge, punishable by a $500 fine and up to a six-month jail sentence.

Adams was hailed as a hero after claiming she used a gun to thwart a kidnapping on April 1. But her story unraveled when no witnesses could be found and mall surveillance video didn’t support the tale.

Abduction charges were later dropped against the accused man, a 54-year-old engineer who was in the area for work.

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A West Virginia mother whose story about foiling a brazen kidnapping attempt unraveled under questioning has been criminally charged and jailed.

Barboursville Police Detective Greg Lucas tells The Associated Press on Friday that Santana Renee Adams has been charged with falsely reporting an emergency incident, a misdemeanor.

He says Adams turned herself in about 2 p.m. and was jailed after a magistrate judge set bail at $20,000. Lucas said she didn’t have an attorney yet.

The charge caps a sensational tale that had Adams using a gun to stop an Egyptian man from kidnapping her daughter in a West Virginia shopping mall. But the story fell apart amid inconsistencies in her story and led to police dropping all charges against the man, Mohamed Fathy Hussein Zayan.

Authorities say Zayan may have simply been patting the girl on the head.

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A detective in West Virginia says criminal charges will be brought against a woman for falsely reporting that an Egyptian man tried to kidnap her daughter from a shopping mall.

Barboursville Police Detective Greg Lucas tells The Associated Press on Friday that they’re going to charge Santana Renee Adams with falsely reporting an emergency incident.

The charge would be the latest turn in a sensational tale of a mother who used a gun to thwart an abduction but quickly unraveled amid inconsistencies in her story.

Authorities on Thursday announced they were dropping charges against the man, Mohamed Fathy Hussein Zayan. Police say he may have simply been patting the girl on the head.

Adams couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

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UPDATE: HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (AP) — A prosecutor in West Virginia is dismissing a charge against a man who was arrested after a woman told police he tried to abduct her young daughter but later said she might have been overreacting.

News outlets report Cabell County Prosecutor Corky Hammers announced Thursday that an attempted abduction charge will be dropped against Mohamed Fathy Hussein Zayan, who was arrested Monday at the Huntington Mall.

Hammers says he’s still determining whether charges will be brought against the woman, who at first told police Zayan grabbed the girl by the hair and tried to pull her away.

Barboursville police Sgt. Anthony Jividen says the woman later told investigators she may have misinterpreted the man’s intentions. Zayan doesn’t speak English. Police say he may have simply been patting the girl on the head.

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UPDATE: CABELL COUNTY, WV (WOAY) – A sensational case of an attempted child kidnapping in a West Virginia shopping mall may have been nothing more than a man being friendly to a little girl.

Barboursville police initially said a woman pulled a gun on the man, forcing him to release her 5-year-old daughter. Mohamed Fathy Hussein Zayan was arrested near the Huntington Mall’s food court on an attempted abduction charge.

But the 54-year-old engineer from Alexandria, Egypt, was released from jail Tuesday night, and Police Sgt. Anthony Jividen says a prosecutor will have to decide whether to charge the woman instead.

The sergeant says the mother now says she may have misinterpreted the man’s intentions. He doesn’t speak English, and police say he may have simply been patting the girl on the head.

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CABELL COUNTY, WV (WOAY)- A man has been arrested after attempting to grab a child from Huntington Mall.

On April 1, 2019, Cabell County 911 received a call around 6 p.m after a female stated she was in a department store and a man attempted to grab her five-year-old daughter. The female stated that she pulled out a firearm and the male suspect left the scene.

Mall security and officers from the Barboursville Police Department observed the male suspect, as described by a female caller, walking near the Food Court and detained him. A statement was taken from the female and her child, and the male suspect was placed under arrest.

The crime is still currently under investigation by the Barboursville Police Department. 

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