More than two years after she was allegedly abducted and taken to Mexico, Majesty Williams, now 6, was reunited with her father in Atlanta this weekend.
Majesty was 4 when her mother, Andrea McCord, now 34, allegedly abducted her from her father’s home in Smyrna, Ga., on April 1, 2021, police said in a press release shared on social media by the Smyrna Police Department and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.
“We wish Majesty and her father the best as they move forward together,” Lieutenant Meredith Holt, Public Information Officer at Smyrna Police Department said in the statement.
At the time of the alleged abduction, the couple was already estranged, Williams later told police, so he spent time working in the yard while the mother visited Majesty. Later that day, he realized that McCord had allegedly left in his car with their child. He eventually received a text message from McCord saying his car was at a nearby grocery store and the keys were under the seat.
Williams reported his daughter missing to local police. The investigation — conducted jointly by Smyrna Police Department, NCMEC and the U.S. Marshals Service — took more than two years.
It’s impossible to know how many children go missing in the United States each year because many children are never reported missing, according to NCMEC. Of those who are, the record keeping system is faulty.
The National Crime Information Center had 30,522 active records of missing children 18 or younger by the end of 2022, according to a report published by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Less than half the total missing person records include information on the circumstances regarding the case, but of those with circumstances provided, 2,386 children had been abducted by a non-custodial parent, the FBI said.
According to Angeline Hartmann, Director of Communications at NCMEC, these types of cases can be particularly difficult to raise awareness about.
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Investigators credited a March episode of the REELZ television show On Patrol: Live, which featured Majesty, for shedding new light on her case.
A break in the case finally came Saturday when McCord and her boyfriend, Custodio Guerra, were located in San Luis Potosi, an eastern and central Mexican state, where they were living with Majesty. The couple was arrested on warrants for Interstate Interference with Child Custody and have been extradited to the United States to face charges.
It was not immediately clear if either has retained a lawyer.
The next day, Majesty and her father embraced at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta. In a statement through NCMEC, Williams said his daughter was doing well.
“Words cannot express how happy I am to have my daughter back home,” he said.