Mother arrested after taking baby that sparked Amber Alert, family speaks out
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – A three-month-old baby is safe and mother in custody after an alleged kidnapping that sparked an Amber Alert.
It started around 2:30 Thursday morning at an apartment complex near South Santa Fe and Southeast 44th.
Police say the mother, 20-year-old Midaysia Highwalker, took the baby, Leyla Rivera, after an altercation with the baby’s father.
People nearby say they often hear arguing.
“We hear them argue all the time, mainly just over dumb, stupid stuff,” neighbor Matthew Seal said.
“I have from time to time heard a little bit of screaming and yelling,” Jamie Jack, family member of a neighbor, said.
Police say the situation then escalated.
“The female, mother of the child, took the baby, indicated that she might harm herself and the baby,” MSgt. Gary Knight with Oklahoma City Police said.
According to the arrest warrant for Highwalker, the baby’s father called his mother saying he needed help removing the baby from the apartment. He said Highwalker had people over at the residence, and Midaysia was smoking marijuana around the child. The warrant goes on to say, “Midaysia forcefully took the child from [the father], grabbing the small infant by her head. Midaysia proceeded to strike [the father’s] head repeatedly and threw various items at him. Midaysia grabbed a black carjack from the front of the residence and forcefully struck [the father] in the back of his head, causing injury.”
The warrant says Midaysia said she was going to kill the baby’s father and his mother and left the residence with the baby.
That sparked an Amber Alert Thursday morning.
However, Highwalker’s sister, who did not want her name disclosed, says that’s unlike her.
“She might’ve said something to get him away from her, but she wouldn’t make threats and she wouldn’t go through with her threats,” she said.
Police searched for Highwalker and the baby. Both were found safe at a friend’s home in Midwest City.
“The mother’s in custody, we’ll interview her and see what came of the domestic,” Knight said.
According to Highwalker’s sister and cousin, there’s more to the story.
“Her boyfriend, he’s been putting his hands on her a long time now, and I feel like she did it just to get away from him, and his mom threatens her, tries to fight her, and they used the baby against her and so she just ran to get away,” her sister said.
“My cousin is a really good mom, and she don’t deserve to be locked up. Her baby daddy has been abusive their whole relationship,” Precious Hopgood, Highwalker’s cousin said.
Highwalker has been booked into the Oklahoma County Jail on complaints of domestic assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, child neglect, domestic abuse in the presence of a minor, threatening to perform an act of violence, embezzlement and destroying property.