Mom expresses relief while kidnapping suspect claims innocence

Mom expresses relief while kidnapping suspect claims innocence
A Bakersfield mother who rescued her baby from being kidnapped is convinced police got the man who grabbed the infant.

That suspect said from jail Wednesday that he was not involved in either recent kidnapping incident, this one on Tuesday and another on Saturday. Police haven't said if the two kidnappings are related.

April Gonzalez sat next to her 7-month-old daughter Wednesday morning in the family's apartment on K Street. It was just a couple feet from where a man had walked in on Tuesday and scooped up the baby playing on the living room floor.

"I walked out of the restroom, he already had my baby in his hands," said Gonzalez.

The mother said she kicked the suspect, he dropped the diaper bag he had in hand, and then he dropped the baby.

At that point the man ran off. But not long after, Stanley Tomlin, 38, was arrested when he was spotted sitting in front of the house next door.

Gonzalez is sure he is the man who grabbed the baby. The mother said she has seen Tomlin hanging around the neighborhood asking for money.

Gonzalez says she even called the police on Tomlin about three weeks ago.

"It wasn't about my baby, he was trying to force his way into my house," said Gonzalez

But, speaking from jail, Tomlin says he was not involved in the incident on K Street.

"Whatever happened in that apartment, I was at the A-One gas station panhandling for a cold beer," said Tomlin.

Tomlin says he makes the rounds panhandling every day. Tomlin said friend lives next to the Gonzalez' apartment, and that's why he sat down there to drink the beer.

Tomlin faces charges of kidnapping, burglary, felony child abuse and grand theft.

Police are also checking to see if this case could be connected to another kidnapping on Saturday.

The Saturday kidnapping occurred not far from K Street. In that incident, a 9-year-old girl was grabbed from her home on the 500 block of Wallace Street. That child started screaming, which woke up relatives and scared off the would-be kidnapper.

No arrest has been made in that kidnapping, and Tomlin, the suspect in the most recent kidnapping, denies he had anything to do with the first incident.

"Saturday morning, I'm on Fourth and Union panhandling," he said.

There has been one arrest related to the family of the victim of Saturday's kidnapping, though it's not clear if the man arrested has anything to do with the kidnapping on Saturday.

Police arrested James Sims, 31, because they said he showed up at the victim's home on Saturday night asking questions about the kidnapping attempt of the 9-year-old girl.

Investigators say Sims got into a fight with the family and threatened them. The family called police, and investigators say Sims got into a fight with officers who arrested him at his house nearby.

Sims now faces charges of making threats, intimidating a witness, assault on a peace officer and resisting arrest.

In the kidnapping on Tuesday, the infant's mother said she's relieved Tomlin was arrested and her baby is OK.

"She's good," Gonzalez said about her child. "She's playful, she doesn't seem like she's affected by it at all anymore. The fall probably just hurt and scared her."

Gonzalez said the baby was probably dropped a couple feet, and ended up with some bruises on her bottom.
Gonzalez says she learned a frightening lesson. The suspect walked in through the open front door, and the mother said she will now keep her doors closed and locked at all times.