The Ottumwa Courier

AP Iowa

February 12, 2014

Woman accused of taking nephew has criminal past

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A woman accused of kidnapping her 5-day-old nephew and leaving him outside an Iowa gas station as police closed in on her has a long criminal history with frequent moves and multiple names, but nothing in her past indicates why she might have taken a child.

The woman who was arrested in Iowa has been charged as 31-year-old Kristen R. Smith, of Denver. But court documents and warrants obtained by The Associated Press show the same woman faces other charges elsewhere as Kristen L. Pearson, who is 32.

Even Smith's family appears confused by her identity. She is accused of taking her nephew from a Town of Beloit home where she had been staying with her half-sister and the child. In a 911 call released Monday, Brianna Marshall, the baby's 18-year-old mother, told police after she discovered her son missing that she wasn't sure of her half-sister's last name. Police quickly tracked Smith to Iowa, and the baby was found the next day and returned to his mother.

Police have refused to speculate on a possible motive, though court documents say Smith had written emails saying she gave birth on Feb. 5. She also wrote Facebook posts about being pregnant and had a prosthetic pregnancy belly in her car when police arrested her.

She faces active warrants relating to fraud, false representation and document tampering in unrelated cases in at least three states. In Texas, she has been charged as Smith. But in Indiana and Wisconsin, she is charged under the name Pearson.

Smith appears to have changed her last name after marrying last year, a move that's not unusual for women. But the use of different middle initials and two different birthdates seems to have tripped up law enforcement and may have led to Smith being released from a Colorado jail while she was wanted for felony crimes in other states.

Text Only
AP Iowa
  • Iowa officer wounded in gun range accident HAMPTON, Iowa (AP) — A northern Iowa police officer is recovering from hand surgery following an accidental shooting at a gun range. The Hampton Police Department says the accident occurred last week during night handgun qualification. The department

    April 23, 2014

  • Crime not suspected in a West Des Moines death WEST DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Investigators don't think a crime was involved in the death of a Clive woman whose body was found next to a burning car in West Des Moines. Police say officers found the body Sunday morning when they arrived at the scene

    April 23, 2014

  • Officials ID body found in burning Iowa field ONEIDA, Iowa (AP) — Officials have released the name of a 78-year-old woman whose body was found by firefighters battling a blaze in a northeast Iowa field. She was identified as Generose "Genny" Bennett, of Oneida. The Greeley Fire Department respon

    April 23, 2014

  • Iowa delays plan to move inmates out of old prison FORT MADISON, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Department of Corrections is delaying plans to close the 175-year-old Iowa State Penitentiary after discovering problems in the heating and cooling system in its $132 million replacement. The department said Tuesday

    April 23, 2014

  • Iowa gets nearly $72M in yearly tobacco payment Eds: APNewsNow. DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa received $71 million last week from tobacco companies — its annual share of a 1998 landmark legal settlement in which tobacco companies pay states for smoking-related health care costs. The Iowa Attorney

    April 21, 2014

  • Debate still simmers over 'Field of Dreams' site DYERSVILLE, Iowa (AP) — A quarter-century after "Field of Dreams" debuted in movie theaters, the northeastern Iowa farm where it was filmed remains at the center of simmering debates. The film, which premiered in Iowa 25 years ago Sunday, turned the

    April 21, 2014

  • Driver dies after western Nebraska collision PAXTON, Neb. (AP) — A 41-year-old Iowa woman has died after a traffic accident on Interstate 80 in western Nebraska. The Nebraska State Patrol says the accident occurred about 7 a.m. Sunday around two miles west of the Paxton interchange. The patrol

    April 21, 2014

  • Firefighters find body in northeast Iowa field ONEIDA, Iowa (AP) — Firefighters say they found the body of a woman as they battled a blaze in a northwest Iowa field. The Greeley Fire Department responded around 2 p.m. Sunday to the report of a cornfield fire in Oneida, three miles to the south. D

    April 21, 2014

  • Man dies after off-roading accident in Des Moines DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say a man has died after an off-roading accident in southeast Des Moines. Authorities say the man and some friends were riding in a wooded area south of the Des Moines River when the vehicle he was in got stuck in

    April 21, 2014

  • Chairman: Branstad staff pressured board on hires DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The chairman of the state's Public Employment Relations Board said Thursday that two aides to Gov. Terry Branstad pressured the board to hire a friend of the administration, in the latest accusation that top government officia

    April 18, 2014

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National