Rayshaun Parson Timeline: From Kidnapping to Sentencing - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/16/07

Rayshaun Parson Timeline: From Kidnapping to Sentencing

Source: Curry County Source: Curry County

Surveillance cameras caught Rayshaun Parson walking out of Covenant Lakeside Hospital on March 10th. She was wearing scrubs and a large jacket--inside that coat was three day old Mychael Darthard Dawadou. Parson apparently tried to use the elevator to leave but both times the alarm sounded because of the baby's security band so she went to another room and took that sensor off.

911 Dispatch: "911, what's your emergency,"

Caller: "We have a, let me look and see for sure, it's a code purple. That won't tell you much of anything, it is an infant abduction."

That call started a nationwide Amber Alert. One of the nearly 200 leads led police to Clovis, New Mexico. There, they found Parson and soon after, found baby Mychael at a home 20 blocks away.

"We would like to thank God and all who prayed for us for the family through this ordeal," said Baby Mychael's grandfather.

Parson then surprised the court by changing her plea to guilty on August 16th, four days before her trial was scheduled to start.

"She insisted on pleading guilty because, as she put it, it was the only way that she could show her remorse to Keyisha (baby Mychael's mother) and also that it was the only thing she could do to help them by sparing them having to go through a trial," said Helen Liggett, Parson's attorney.

Since August, Parson has been in the custody of the federal government. Defense attorney Helen Liggett is one of the few to have contact with her in the last eight months.

I asked, "Have you seen a change in Rayshaun from the first day you saw her to today?"

Liggett said, "There's been a marked change in her mental condition. When first met her she was completely unresponsive. She just sat with her mouth hanging open while I spoke with her. No flicker of understanding did I ever see. And at this point she's an articulate, kind, compassionate young woman."

Friday, Parson learned she would serve 20 years in prison for kidnapping and five years supervised probation.

"The defendant in this case, we believe engaged in significant planning to kidnap this young baby," said the federal prosecutor.

With good behavior, she'll have to serve at least 85% of that sentence.

"20 years is the least the judge could impose, it's the statutory minimum so 20 years is the least but it's still incredible harsh," Liggett said.

And while she didn't make a statement, baby Mychael's mother did appear in court. When asked, what she thought about the ruling, prosecutors say she didn't say she was unhappy.

11/16/07
Covenant Says New Security Measures Are Working
Rayshaun Parson is behind bars, but are babies safer at Covenant Medical Center now, than they were eight months ago. NewsChannel 11's Julia Bruck talks with Covenant's Vice President about the hospital's new security measures.

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