Amber Alert works ending weekend abduction
By: CJ Cassidy
By: CJ Cassidy
Park Hills, MO - The man accused of abducting his ex-girlfriend and child, appeared in a Southern Illinois courtroom Tuesday afternoon.
Shane Kohut of Park Hills faces numerous charges in Missouri and Illinois.
Police say Kohut forced the mother and his four year old daughter into their car and then drove to Johnson County in Southern Illinois.
An alert passer-by in Johnson County noticed the car Kohut was driving, and recognized it as the one police had put out a warning on.
Tuesday, officers and many folks in Park Hills call the incident a close call, and say they have the amber alert to be grateful for the safe return.
"There was an opportunity or two where she could have run down the street, but he had the baby she wasn't going to leave the baby with him," Park Hills Police Detective Mike Kurtz says Lori Wells did exactly what any mother would do when faced with having to protect her child.
"According to the ex girlfriend he was under the influence of methamphetamine and she couldn't figure out their destination they were heading he was just driving," Kurtz says.
He adds Shane Kohut and his ex-girlfriend had their share of problems in the past.
"As a matter of fact, he was put in prison at one time, and got out about four months ago over charges of domestic violence," he says.
Police, like Lori Wells, had no idea where Kohut was headed.
That's where the amber alert came in.
"We handle it through the 911 dispatch center, and give them all the information, like who's in danger what's happened," Kurtz explains.
The message transmits across the country.
Within hours a passer-by in Southern Illinois matched the description of the car Kohut was driving to that on the alert.
And Lori Well's neighbors who say they were worried sick earlier, can now breathe a sigh of relief.
"I couldn't believe how fast they caught him," one neighbor says.
"We were really glad when they found them and they were safe," another says adding it's good to know the amber alert system works, as a parent.
Kohut faces kidnapping, burglary and armed criminal action charges in Missouri.