san jose kidnapping

San Jose Kidnapping: Police Recover 3-Month-Old Baby Taken From Home

Worker from a nearby adult care facility called police when she spotted a suspicious van with a baby carrier inside

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UPDATE, 9:30 a.m. Tuesday: Police on Tuesday recovered a 3-month-old baby who had been kidnapped a day earlier from his grandmother's San Jose home, NBC Bay Area has learned.

The baby, Brandon Cuellar, was found safe and was taken to a hospital as a precaution. One suspect was in custody, police said, but they did not provide further details about the arrest or the suspect's identity.

A worker from a nearby adult care facility called police when she spotted a suspicious van with a baby carrier inside. The woman, identified only as Gloria, said the vehicle "didn't sit well" with her, so she peeked inside, saw the car seat and called 911.

San Jose police and the FBI are searching for a kidnapping suspect who they say took a 3-month-old baby from a home Monday afternoon.

Police on Tuesday said they have a person of interest in custody they are talking with about the kidnapping. They said the person showed up at the grandmother's home with a baby carrier and it appears "this was planned."

"I am confident we will have some good news about this case later today," police spokesman Sgt. Christian Camarillo said during a news conference.

Police said the suspect entered an apartment in the 1000 block of Elm Street and took the baby, named Brandon Cuellar, as the child's grandmother was unloading groceries.

"Right now, we have every available resource not only out in the field but here at the police department working this case," Camarillo said.

NBC Bay Area
Police on Tuesday morning towed a Nissan Pathfinder from near the scene of a San Jose kidnapping and confirmed it was connected to the case. (April 26, 2022)

San Jose police Tuesday morning towed away a Nissan Pathfinder from near the scene of the kidnapping and confirmed with NBC Bay Area it is connected to the investigation.

The kidnapping was first reported just after 1 p.m. Monday by Brandon's grandmother, Camarillo said.

Sgt. Christian Camarillo of the San Jose Police Department provides an update on the investigation into the kidnapping of a 3-month-old baby.

The grandmother told police she came home with Brandon after grocery shopping. The grandmother took the baby inside the apartment and then went back outside to unload groceries.

"In that short amount of time, someone entered the apartment ... and left with the baby," Camarillo said.

Brandon's mother was at work when the incident occurred, Camarillo said. She is working with police as they investigate. Brandon's father is incarcerated and is "out of the picture," Camarillo said. Police plan to talk to him soon.

San Jose Police Department
Three-month-old Brandon Cuellar.

Police released surveillance footage showing the suspect walking down a sidewalk carrying a baby carrier. The family does not recognize the suspect, police said.

Police describe the suspect as a male wearing black pants and a dark blue shirt, gray shoes with white trim, a gray baseball hat and a black face mask. They said he has short hair.

Brandon is wearing a white, long-sleeve onesie with dinosaurs on it, police said.

“If you have this baby, please get this baby back to its mother," said Camarillo. "We can deal with consequences after. Anybody who is a mother or father, you don’t love anything more than you love your child. This mother right now is going through a very, very bad time.”

Family members have gathered outside the residence searching for updates. A man who identified himself as Brandon's uncle told NBC Bay Area they feel helpless because they do not have any more information about the kidnapping.

NBC Bay Area's Damian Trujillo provides the latest on a kidnapping investigation in San Jose.

The FBI is assisting San Jose police with the investigation. Agents were going door to door overnight Tuesday in search of Brandon or any information that would lead them to the suspect.

Anyone who spots the suspect or the baby is asked to call 408-277-4166 or 911.

This is a developing news story. Details may change as more information becomes available. Stay tuned for updates.

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