California mom with suspected illicit ties allegedly kidnapped 2-year-old daughter: police

A California woman who had her daughter taken away from her by the state has abducted the two-year-old girl, police said Thursday. 

Crystal Mendez was last seen with her daughter Tayana at an Oakland BART station, the San Jose Police Department said. The child was possibly taken from a residence, police said.

Hours later, the girl was found at a relative’s home in Oakland, police said. Mendez has not been found. 


Mendez is a “heavy drug user” and has ties to San Francisco Tenderloin District, a hub for drug use and sales. 

“Due to drug use and arrests she was deemed not fit to care for her child. Family Services placed the child with a guardian and the suspect abducted her,” a police tweet states. 

Mendez has a tattoo of “Dante” on her back, authorities said. 

Police released images of Mendez and the girl leaving an apartment in San Jose. She is seen pushing a stroller outside the building. 

“Help us find Tayana” the department said in a tweet. 

Mendez is 5-foot-1, weighs 150 pounds, and has long brown hair and brown eyes, according to a police description. She was wearing a white, hooded jacket, black, skinny jeans with ripped knees and dark-colored sneakers.

The child was wearing a white jacket with pink sleeves and blue pants, police said.

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