SAN AUGUSTINE, Texas -- Krystle Tanner and her mother, Gloria Walker, for years had successfully concealed the true identity of the boy that authorities say they kidnapped from Houston in 2004 when he was just 8 months old.
They hid him in homes in Central and East Texas, kept him out of
And their secret might never have been discovered if Tanner's newborn son in April 2010 had not tested positive for marijuana. That prompted an investigation by child welfare officials, who were told by Tanner she had another child.
However, attempts to find that other child, who turned out to be Miguel, would go on for nearly two more years as authorities say Tanner and Walker thwarted their efforts through elaborate lies and by secretly shuttling Miguel between
Tanner, 27, and Walker, 50, who each face charges of kidnapping and injury to a child, were to make their first court appearances Friday in San Augustine since being indicted last month.
Miguel, now 8 years old, is in foster care as a Houston judge waits to hear next month from therapists on when the boy can be reunited with his parents, who are seeking custody despite allowing their four other children to live with another couple.
Investigators believe that in 2004, Tanner, then 19, wanted a child of her own "very badly," said San Augustine County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Gary Cunningham. She lived in the same Houston apartment complex as Miguel and his family, and often baby-sat him.