U.S. man accused of abducting son, 3, arrested in Manitoba
'I've never seen anything like this,' says Brandon motel manager of arrest
A Colorado woman is expected to be reunited soon with her three-year-old son, who was found with her estranged husband at a motel in Brandon, Man., following a 27-hour ordeal.
Brandy Turner's worst nightmare — that her son, Luke, was abducted — ended on Sunday, when she learned that the child was found safe at the Casa Blanca Motor Inn in the western Manitoba city.
"I feel great. I'm still exhausted, but I'm just so thankful that he's safe," Brandy Turner told NBC News in Denver.
On Monday, she told CBC News she spoke to Luke on Sunday night and "I told him I loved him and that he's coming home."
Brandy Turner does not have a passport, though, so she is planning to meet her son in the U.S., likely in Minot, N.D. Luke is temporarily staying with a foster family in Brandon until he can fly there.
Monty Turner, 51, allegedly attacked Brandy Turner with pepper spray a stun gun at her at her home in Longmont, Colo., on Saturday before fleeing with the boy.
A court order prohibits Monty Turner from contacting his estranged wife and son.
Brandy Turner told police she stepped outside her home for a cigarette and saw her husband in the backyard as Luke was having breakfast, the Longmont Daily Times-Call reported Monday.
She said she went inside, closed and locked the door and tried to call 911, but Monty Turner forced his way inside and threw the phone to the floor.
During a scuffle, pepper spray was shot into her face and she felt an electric shock she believed to be from a stun gun, she told the newspaper, adding that the scene angered Luke.
"He came unglued," she told the newspaper. "He jumped over my chair to where my husband had me on the floor and screamed at him, 'Don't hurt my mommy!"'
Turner said she went to another room and called 911, then saw Monty Turner leaving on a bicycle with Luke.
Drove 1,500 kilometres north
Police said Monty Turner then drove 1,500 kilometres north, crossing the border into Manitoba.
An Amber Alert was issued and Monty Turner was arrested at the motel at about 1:30 p.m., said Longmont police Cmdr. Jeff Satur.
Luke was found unharmed.
Motel manager Bernie Hiebert says it all happened quickly, not long after he swiped Monty Turner's credit card and handed the pair the keys to a room.
"I've never seen anything like this before. It was like, in the back of my mind, something [from] a movie," she said.
"They surrounded a vehicle, a red Dodge Durango, and then next thing I know they're picking up the gentleman that checked in with his son."
Man faces kidnapping, other charges
Prosecutors in Colorado were working with Canadian officials to get custody of Monty Turner, who is currently held by the Canada Border Services Agency.
Turner is scheduled to appear before the Immigration and Refugee Board in Winnipeg on Tuesday. It wasn't known if he had a lawyer.
Officials with the CBSA told CBC News they will argue that he should remain detained until they can obtain a permit to deport him.
Satur told a Denver newspaper that Monty Turner had previously disappeared with the boy, but no crime was committed in that case because both parents had custody rights at the time.
Turner is being held on numerous charges, including:
- Second-degree kidnapping.
- Second-degree burglary.
"There's just a litany of charges," said Satur, who declined to detail what led authorities to the whereabouts of Turner and his son.
"We are working with the FBI on extradition and reuniting [the boy] with his mother," Satur said. "We've been working very hard on this case since yesterday."
Brandy Turner said she has no idea how the pair crossed the border, even with the Amber Alert in place.
"I don't know. I think they're still trying to work out how he got into Canada," she said.
CBSA officials said they could not release any information regarding Monty Turner's border crossing into Canada, nor could they say whether staff were aware of the Amber Alert or what its parameters were.
Earlier Sunday, the boy's grandfather, Ronald Turner, 72, was pulled over in southwest Missouri on a warrant for second-degree kidnapping. He was driving a vehicle with a licence plate number listed on the Amber Alert.
Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Bill Lowe said the grandfather was alone when he was pulled over and was being held at Bates County Jail.
With files from The Associated Press