Woman Attempts to Kidnap Toddler From Yonkers Hospital

The woman was charged with attempted kidnapping in the second degree, unlawful imprisonment in the first degree and endangering the welfare of a child.

Woman Attempts to Kidnap Toddler From Yonkers Hospital

A woman attempted to kidnap a toddler from a Yonkers hospital emergency room in February.

Laysha Machado allegedly took a stroller with a two-year-old inside and fled St. Joseph’s Hospital, reports ABC 7.

Machado, 28, was chased by a security officer who apprehended her until police arrived. The toddler was returned to its family unharmed.

According to the indictment, the toddler was “exposed to the risk of serious physical injury.”

At her arraignment on Monday, Machado was charged with attempted kidnapping in the second degree, unlawful imprisonment in the first degree and endangering the welfare of a child. Her court date is scheduled for Sept. 3 and she is being held in the Westchester County Jail.

The American Psychology Association says hostages and kidnap survivors typically experience stress reactions in their thinking, emotions and interactions.

When hostages or kidnap survivors are released, it is important for them to:

  • Receive medical attention.
  • Be in a safe and secure environment.
  • Connect with loved ones.
  • Have an opportunity to talk or journal their experience if and when they choose.
  • Receive resources and information about how to seek counseling, particularly if their distress from the incident is interfering with their daily lives.
  • Protect their privacy (e.g. avoid media overexposure including watching and listening to news and participating in media interviews).
  • Take time to adjust back into family and work.

As a family member or friend, you should listen, be patient and focus on the victim’s freedom rather than engage in negative talk about their past situation.

It is important to keep in mind that humans are highly resilient and heal in spite of awful tragedies.

To find a psychologist in your area, visit APA’s Psychologist Locator.

About the Author

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Katie Malafronte is Campus Safety's Web Editor. She graduated from the University of Rhode Island in 2017 with a Bachelor's Degree in Communication Studies and a minor in Writing & Rhetoric. Katie has been CS's Web Editor since 2018.

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