UPDATED: La. mother arrested on kidnapping charges in Portsmouth
PORTSMOUTH — A mother from New Orleans spent Mother’s Day in a Rockingham County jail cell, after she was arrested by state police in Portsmouth after allegedly kidnapping her 11-year-old daughter.
New Hampshire State Police say Andrea Brooks, 34, who has no last known address, was arrested following a traffic stop in Portsmouth late Friday night. She was charged with being a fugitive from justice, after police determined she was wanted in Louisiana on kidnapping charges. She is due to be arraigned today at the 10th Circuit Court in Portsmouth.
According to New Hampshire State Police Sgt. Keith Walker, Brooks was stopped on Interstate 95 in Portsmouth at 10:55 p.m. Friday on a motor vehicle violation. State police determined she was wanted by New Orleans police for allegedly kidnapping her 11-year-old daughter from an undisclosed community near New Orleans. The child was not in the vehicle with Brooks at the time of the traffic stop.
Through questioning by state police, investigators determined the girl was likely at an address in Dorchester, Mass. State police contacted their counterparts in Massachusetts, and members of the Boston Police Department responded to the address and safely located the girl Saturday. Walker said he was not sure if the occupants of the Dorchester residence were relatives of the child.
The girl, whose name was not released by police, was transported to Carney Hospital in Dorchester, Mass., as a precaution, and later released into the custody of officials with the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families. State police say arrangements are being made to return the girl to the custody of her father, who lives outside New Orleans.
Brooks will be arraigned today on a fugitive from justice charge, though state police say additional charges are possible as their investigation continues. Brooks will also face kidnapping charges in Louisiana.
“If she waives extradition on the fugitive from justice charge here, arrangements will be made with Louisiana police to come and get her,” said Walker.
Walker cited the work of several additional local police departments, including the Newton and Reading police in Massachusetts and Brookline and Dover police in New Hampshire, with helping to locate the child safely.
“They were instrumental with helping us chase down any and all leads as to where she might be, until the suspect finally gave us an address in Dorchester, where she was found,” said Walker. “Anyone with a tie to her, they helped us follow up on any information we developed.”
New Hampshire State Police say the incident remains under investigation by Trooper John Kelly and Trooper Gregory Hildreth. Anyone with information regarding the alleged kidnapping is asked to contact Trooper Kelly or Hildreth at New Hampshire State Police Troop A at 223-8490.