Police in Louisiana and Texas are searching for a van believed to be carrying two women and a child, and possibly a man, after one of the woman allegedly tried to sell a child at a New Orleans-area gas station and then fled towards Texas.
According to The Advocate, at about 9:30 a.m. Friday morning, police in Hammond, Louisiana (northwest of New Orleans), received a “bizarre” 911 call saying that a Hispanic woman was going from vehicle to vehicle at a RaceTrac gas station, begging for money, and asking if anyone wanted to buy the child, who appeared to be about 10-years-old.
Lt. Vince Giannobile of the Hammond Police Department told WVUE a somewhat conflicting version of events, saying that the woman only tried to sell the child to one person.
“They came up to several people, first begging for money for gas, and then, ultimately came to one person and offered to sell the child.”
Patrons at the convenience store told the media that they were aghast at witnessing someone trying to sell their child. Tony Mayo of Ponchatoula said that he has never been so desperate for money that he would consider selling his own child.
“I raised four children. I would have never had dreamed of giving my children up for nothing. I’ve been in bad shape. I’ve had a hard time bringing up kids, but you don’t give up your kids. It just doesn’t happen.”
Hammond police put out a BOLO (“Be On The Lookout”) alert for a blue 2005 Dodge Caravan with Florida license plates BSXR89.
Louisiana State Police Master Trooper Brooks David said that the van was later spotted by a traffic camera in Lake Charles — to the west — leading authorities to believe the suspects were headed towards Texas.
“We believe the vehicle is now in Texas. Texas authorities have been notified.”
Unfortunately, this is not the first time that someone has attempted to sell their child. Earlier this year, according to this Inquisitr report, an Indiana woman confessed to selling her baby to a known pornographer for sex because she “needed the money.”
As of this post, it is not clear if the woman who tried to sell her child was acting alone — “some crazy person,” as Hammond Police Chief Roddy Devall put it — or if she and her accomplices are part of a larger child-trafficking ring.
[Image courtesy of: WVUE]