Faustino Utrera Kidnapped His Kids 15 Years Ago; Mom Finally Finds Them on Facebook
Thursday, June 10, 2010 at 4:56 pm
15 years ago Faustino Utrera grabbed his two kids -- ages 2 and 3 -- told his wife she'd never see them again, and left their San Bernardino home. He was true to his word. Mom hadn't seen them since. She says she looked everywhere for them.
But she wouldn't find them until 15 years later, when she finally located her daughter on Facebook in March. Utrera and the kids had moved to Orlando. But after exchanging messages with her daughter, who is now almost 18, the girl abruptly cut off contact, saying she wanted nothing to do with mom. She also deleted her Facebook page.
|15 years after her husband kidnapped them, the now teenage kids of Prince Sagala refuse to see her|
He's in jail, and the kids are being returned to California. But here's where the happy ending sours.
The kids haven't seen their mom since they were very young. No doubt Utrera's spent the last 15 years telling them what a witch she is.
"There is no relationship there," Carrie Hoeppner of the Florida Department of Children and Families told WESH-TV. "You don't have that immediate joyful reunification. If in fact that is what will progress, it will take time. These children will have to build a relationship, and that is something that will not happen overnight."
UPDATE: Kids refuse to see mom 15 years after they were kidnapped.
Mother Prince Sagala was about to get a divorce from her husband 15 years ago. Then she returned from work one day to find her husband Faustino had disappeared, taking their young kids with him.
She would later hear word that they'd fled to Mexico, but she was scared to travel there to look for them. Faustino had threatened her before, she says, and she feared for her safety. In the meantime, she remarried three years after her husband disappeared, and she and her new husband went on to have two kids.
But using a fake ID, Faustino and the children later moved to Florida. But even though he's in jail and Prince is entitled to custody, Florida officials aren't ready to give them back -- at least yet -- for fear they'll run away.
The oldest daughter told Prince that she'd heard bad things about her. And Faustino had been living with another woman who'd assumed the role of their mother.
The kids have been sent to live least temporarily with another relative in Florida. This, obviously, isn't the end of the case. But it isn't a happy moment right now.
See our last abduction story: Satanist Creep Named Suspect in Woman's Disappearance.