San Diego

NY Mom Accused in Daughter's Abduction Will Be Extradited From San Diego

Laylani Ortiz, 5, was abducted by her non-custodial mother, Rene Stong, 32, in Rochester, New York, on Nov. 15 and flown to San Diego

A woman accused of abducting her daughter in Rochester, New York, last week and fleeing with the child to San Diego will be extradited to her home state.

The San Diego County District Attorney's office said Tuesday that Rene Stong, 32, had waived her right to an extradition hearing and will be extradited by the state of New York. She's being held without bail at the Las Colinas Detention and Reentry Facility and will appear in court next on Dec. 11 to check the status of New York's transportation arrangements to get her back to the state.

Stong, who does not have custody of her daughter, Laylani Ortiz, 5, picked up the girl from school without permission on Nov. 15, according to the Rochester Police Department (RPD). NBC affiliate WHEC News 10 reported that Stong took the girl off the school bus, which she was not authorized to do.

When the girl didn’t come home from school that day, her family called the police. The RPD identified Stong as a possible suspect in the girl’s disappearance and thought she might return to her home in Rochester with the child.

That did not happen.

The girl’s family told WHEC News 10 that Stong took an Uber to Laylani’s school. After taking her off the bus Stong and the child took the Uber to the Greater Rochester International Airport (GRIA).

There, Stong bought plane tickets and left the state with Laylani, flying to Detroit and then San Diego on the morning of Nov. 16. The RPD said an Amber Alert was not immediately issued, as investigators did not believe Laylani was at risk of injury or death.

RPD investigators believed the mother and child were in Southern California. Officials were working with law enforcement agencies in the region to find them, including the FBI, Rochester officials told NBC 7. 

On Nov. 17, Stong was arrested by officers with the San Diego Police Department at a Motel 6 in San Diego's Little Italy community after a motel employee recognized her from a flier. Ortiz was found safe and in good health and was later reunited with her grandmother, who flew from New York to San Diego.

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