A former New Jersey police officer stabbed his child's mother in a New York City apartment and took off with the toddler, prompting authorities in New York and New Jersey to issue an Amber Alert until the suspect was found and taken into custody on the Garden State Parkway, according to police.
The 3-year-old girl is safe, and her father, 51-year-old Diomedes Valenzuela, was arrested after he was pulled over on the Garden State Parkway near Clifton at about 5 p.m., New Jersey State Police said.
Valenzuela allegedly stabbed the 31-year-old mother of the child multiple times on Perry Avenue in the Bronx at 1:30 p.m. and fled with their daughter in a 2004 Dodge Caravan, spurring a search across two states after his car was spotted going over the George Washington Bridge, police said.
"It was obviously a high-risk stop," said New Jersey State Police Commander Lt. Al Miller in Bloomfield. "The suspect was arrested without incident. The little girl was unharmed."
The stabbing victim is in serious condition at St. Barnabas Hospital.
A friend of the victim said she was awaiting updates outside the emergency room.
"I've never seen physical or domestic violence or anything in that way," Camilah Brooks said of the family.
Valenzuela is a former New Jersey police officer, according to officials.
NJ.com reports that Valenzuela was an Irvington police officer until March 2002. He was suspended after charges were filed against him in connection with his November 2001 arrest of a taxi driver.
He was found guilty of filing false reports and stripped of his badge.
The investigation into the stabbing and abduction is ongoing. It was not immediately clear if Valenzuela had an attorney.