PORTLAND -- A 17-year-old accused of kidnapping in the disappearance of an infant early Tuesday morning in Portland has confessed to police, according to court documents obtained by KGW.
The court documents also said that the four-month-old boy spent five hours outside, in just a onesie and a diaper, while temperatures ranged from just 39 to 41 degrees.
The infant was reported missing by his mother from a Portland apartment at East Burnside and 148th Avenue around 2 a.m. He was eventually found alone around 7 a.m., in the front yard of a home about a mile away from where he vanished.
Kabriana Harper was charged as an adult. She was arrested Tuesday for second-degree kidnapping, a Measure 11 crime, as well as criminal mistreatment, child neglect and reckless endangerment.
The court documents said that that baby's mother, Angel Lee, told police her son was asleep in his car seat when she went into the bathroom to take a shower. She told police Harper was her cousin and she was also at the apartment but about to head home.
Lee said she heard the door close while taking her shower and when she came out of the bathroom, both Harper and the baby were gone.
Other relatives said they called Harper on the phone and she denied having the baby, but later confessed that she had left him in a front yard six blocks away because she was afraid of getting in trouble.
Harper later told investigators she took the baby to protect him because she was worried about his welfare and safety. But she was unable to describe any threat to the child or explain why she felt that leaving him outside for five hours was safer than being asleep in his mother’s apartment.
The boy was very cold when he was rescued, but otherwise okay and taken to a hospital for evaluation, police said.
A person who lives nearby told KGW his neighbor spotted the baby in her front yard as she left for work.
Portland policeman Kevin Macho held the baby after he was found safe.
"It's a good day," he said.
What's important, he added, was that the baby was found. Macho said it was especially touching for him, since he's a father, too.
"Under these uniforms, we are husbands, mothers, fathers," he said.
Police asked that anyone who witnessed the incident or has more information about the case call detective Mike Weinstein at (503) 823-0446 or send an email to Mike.Weinstein@PortlandOregon.gov.
(KGW reporters Pat Dooris, Ashley Korslien and Kyle Iboshi also contributed to this report.)