PROVO, Utah (ABC4) – A man has been arrested after attempting to kidnap a baby from a car in Provo on Tuesday.
Provo Police have identified the suspect as Emilio Lopez Bernal, 51.
Authorities say the incident happened outside of a Provo home around 4:58 p.m.
The victim says she was sitting in a car parked outside on the driveway of her daughter’s home. Inside the car was her 1-year-old granddaughter and the woman’s other daughter.
The women were waiting for the baby’s mother to exit the home so they could all drive into town to run some errands.
While they were sitting in the car, the suspect, Bernal, approached the car and opened the rear passenger door where the baby was standing up in her car seat. He allegedly reached toward her and said, “Give me the baby” in Spanish.
The victim told the suspect to get away from the car while the man began shouting at the victim to give him the child. The victim says the man leaned inside the vehicle and tried the grab the baby.
The victim’s other daughter who was sitting in the backseat grabbed the child and exited the car on the opposite side, running back into the house.
The victim says the suspect began yelling about calling the police. Police say he then closed the car door and backed away, retreating into an area of nearby rose bushes. The victim says he stood there for a bit, then walked onto the porch area of a trailer next door.
When police arrived, they found the man standing on the trailer porch. Police discovered the man had active arrest warrants and were able to apprehend him.
During the arrest, authorities say the man “made odd statements” saying the women were his cousins when they were not related to him at all. Police say the man kept changing his story about how he knew the victims and provided the wrong names for the victims and the baby.
Authorities say the man also appeared to be talking to a nonexistent person sitting next to him. Officers believe the man is “possibly suffering from some sort of mental illness or drug-induced issue.”
He was arrested on one charge of child kidnapping and is currently booked at the Utah County Sheriff’s Office.