Tennessee News

Kingsport Police reveal new details in kidnapping case that sparked an AMBER Alert

KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) - Sunday evening officials with the Kingsport Police Department revealed more information about what sparked a brief AMBER Alert earlier in the day.

According to Kingsport Police, it was around 1:30 a.m. Sunday when 28-year-old Brooke Hayes was reportedly asked to drive a mother, who was an acquaintance, and her 18-month-old daughter to the Walmart on Fort Henry Drive in Kingsport.

Police then say the mother left her child, and Hayes in the car as she went to go get a beverage. 

By the time the mother got back to the car, police said she would find her vehicle, her daughter, and Hayes were all gone.

Kingsport Police said the mother waited at Walmart for more than two hours before calling the police. 

When she made the call around 3:30 a.m. Kingsport Police officers responded to the Walmart and were able to speak to Hayes over the phone.

Those officers asked Hayes to come back to the Walmart with the child and the car, and she agreed to do just that.

Hayes ended up not showing up, and KPD officials began to investigate this case as a possible child abduction.

Detectives then requested the TBI issue an AMBER Alert for the 1-year-old, Madalynn Pearson.

Not long after that AMBER Alert was issued, police found Hayes and Pearson.

No further information about how and where they were found was immediately available Sunday night.

Kingsport Police said Hayes has been charged with especially aggravated kidnapping and motor vehicle theft.

She was booked into the Kingsport City on a $30,000 bond. 

KPD officials said she's since been transported to the Sullivan County Jail in Blountville.

News Channel 11's Caroline Corrigan reached out to TBI officials Sunday afternoon to ask why people in our region didn't receive a notification on their phone about this particular AMBER Alert.

According to TBI spokesperson Leslie Earhart, issuing this notification involved a series of steps, and added that the cell phone alerts are part of a secondary notification system. 

Earhart said those cell phone alerts are sent out by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and that in this case, the 1-year-old was found before any secondary alert was distributed.


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