Morgan Hill Police issued an Amber Alert about 2 p.m. Tuesday
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Police identified two suspects who might be driving in a blue
Toyota Camry who were allegedly involved in the May 31
kidnapping-by-car-theft of infant Mariana Corona, an incident which
launched a statewide Amber Alert. Full article
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Police identified two suspects who might be driving in a blue Toyota Camry who were allegedly involved in the May 31 kidnapping-by-car-theft of infant Mariana Corona, an incident which launched a statewide Amber Alert.

Maribel Mejia, 33 of Chualar, and Enrique Rocha are the suspects, according to Morgan Hill Police Sgt. Shane Palsgrove.

Police obtained a $120,000 warrant on suspicion of kidnapping, vehicle theft, child endangerment and possession of stolen property for Mejia, Palsgrove said. An arrest warrant for Rocha, whose age is unknown, could not be secured because the suspect could not be positively identified.

Corona, the victim, was missing for less than four hours May 31 when the unattended car in which she was awaiting her mother Maribel Corona, 24, was stolen from a Morgan Hill food pantry. The car, an Infiniti sedan, and the child, a Morgan Hill resident, were found abandoned in the parking of a Salinas park the same afternoon.

Maribel Corona’s purse was stolen from the vehicle, Palsgrove said. Police found out that the following day, June 1, suspect Mejia used Corona’s stolen credit card at multiple locations in Los Banos.

Morgan Hill detectives responded to the locations and watched surveillance videos showing Mejia using the stolen credit card, with Rocha and Mejia’s 4-year-old son standing close by.

Mariana Corona, found by nurse Peggy Clancy, was healthy and safe, and reunited with her mother the evening of May 31.

The accidental kidnapping sparked an Amber Alert that drew personnel and resources from area agencies including MHPD, Gilroy Police, California Highway Patrol and Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office.

When she reported the child missing, Maribel Corona told police that she left her daughter inside the parked vehicle for about five minutes while she went inside the St. Catherine Church food pantry on Peak Avenue to retrieve groceries. When she exited the building, the car and child were gone.

Police said Corona was walking into the food pantry at the same time that Mejia and Rocha were walking out, and that was when they stole the vehicle with the child inside.

The FBI helped Morgan Hill police in processing evidence collected from the recovered stolen vehicle and other areas.

Police think Mejia and Rocha are traveling in a dark blue four-door 1988 Toyota Camry, with a license plate number of 2HJD721, Palsgrove said. Both rear windows are covered with possibly black duct tape.

Earlier this week, Santa Clara County prosecutors said they will not charge Maribel Corona with the crime of child endangerment for leaving her daughter alone in the vehicle that was stolen.

Police don’t think the car thief or thieves knew the child or intended to kidnap or hurt her, and were only interested in stealing the vehicle.

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