Carlina White's parents, Earl Tyson and Joy White / Carlina White as a baby / Carlina White nowhttp://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...a163333S05.DTLMore than two decades ago, a newborn sick with fever was snatched from a New York City hospital, her frantic mother returning to the emergency room to find an empty crib. On Wednesday, police said the baby — now a woman — has been found.
Carlina White was just 19 days old when she disappeared from Harlem Hospital on Aug. 4, 1987. Police searched for her kidnappers but never found enough evidence to charge any suspects. Her mother, Joy White, always had a feeling that her baby was alive, her family said.
On Jan. 4, a woman known as Nejdra Nance, who was raised in Bridgeport, Conn., and now lives in Atlanta, contacted White, sending along baby photos that looked nearly identical to shots of Carlina posted on a missing children's website. Nance told White she thought she may be her daughter.
"She said she just had a feeling, she felt different from the people raising her," said Nance's maternal grandmother, Elizabeth White, 71. "She searched, and then she found Joy."
Joy White contacted the New York Police Department to see if it could help investigate whether the woman was really Carlina White.
"It sounded legitimate and credible, so I had missing persons reach out to her," said Detective Martin Brown, who fielded the call. DNA tests performed on Joy White, her ex-husband, Carl Tyson, and 23-year-old Nance matched, police said. Nejdra Nance was Carlina White.
They already reunited once recently, when Nance came to New York with her 5-year-old daughter, Samani.
"It was wonderful, she didn't even seem like a stranger, she just fit right in," Elizabeth White said. "We all went up there, we had dinner together, her aunts were there. She brought her beautiful daughter. It was magic."
Elizabeth White said she didn't ask Nance too many questions about how she grew up or how she knew she was not a member of the family with whom she lived. She didn't want to push Nance too much.
"That will all come," Elizabeth White said of the history. "What's important now is our baby girl is home. She's home."
http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/..._ago_reui.htmlThe girl's kidnapper - a drug-user who once beat Carlina with a shoe - remained the target of a police search, according to Joy White.
"She didn't really raise her," the irate mother said. "She neglected her and let other people raise her."
The family's anger toward the missing suspect was overwhelmed by their elation about the discovery of the now 23-year-old woman.
When a detective told Tyson the test results were a match, Tyson said he cried more tears of joy.
The grandmother and mom said they never gave up hope.
Five years ago, a weepy Joy White told the Daily News that she still prayed daily for the return of her daughter - and believed Carlina would one day return.
It was August 1987 when the little girl's abduction - the only known hospital kidnapping in New York history - stunned the city. It stumped investigators for more than two decades.
The three-week-old girl, just 21 inches long and weighing eight pounds, was rushed to Harlem Hospital by her parents with a 104-degree temperature.
A woman dressed as a nurse approached 16-year-old Joy White in the emergency room, offering soothing words to the worried mother.
"Don't cry," she said. "Everything's going to be all right."
But everything instead went wrong. The compassion was actually a cover-up, and the woman brazenly snatched the infant before disappearing.
Authorities said the white-clad woman was hanging around the hospital for several weeks before the kidnapping.
Police managed to track one suspect to Baltimore, but were never able to bring charges in what became one of the NYPD's coldest cases.
White and father Carl Tyson received a $750,000 settlement from the city after filing a lawsuit. The couple split up about a year after their daughter's disappearance.
Both went on to raise separate families while wondering about the fate of their first born.
http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/i...kXPH2DQoPXnI8HTwenty-three years later, Carlina White -- who was raised Nejdra Nance -- suspected she was not biologically related to the family that raised her. As a teenager, White said she had never been able to find her birth certificate.
After doing an Internet search, White wound up on the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children site and spotted a photo of a girl named "Carlina Renae White."
On Jan. 4, the center called the woman Carlina believed to be her her biological mother and forwarded her the baby picture snapped by the family she is now living with.
Meanwhile, the woman who allegedly took Carlina abused her, hitting her so hard with a shoe that it left an imprint on her face, Joy White said.
The woman, kept guns by her bed, took drugs including crack and would leave Carlina and her "brother" unattended for long stretches of time, Joy White said her daughter told her.
The kidnappers, who have not been identified, could face federal prosecution, as there is no statute of limitations for the kidnapping of a child under 18 as long as that child remains alive.