December 20, 2014

Suspect in Beloit kidnapping faces charges in Iowa

The woman accused of kidnapping a baby near Beloit, and leaving him in the cold behind a gas station, is now facing both state and federal charges.

A county prosecutor in Iowa charged 31-year-old Kristen Smith Thursday with a state count of child endangerment. Prosecutor Jeffrey Renander said she remains in jail after making an initial court appearance in Cedar County Iowa for endangering young Kayden Powell in “numerous ways.”

Smith is jailed close to where she was arrested last week in West Branch Iowa. Authorities took her into custody on an unrelated warrant when investigators in Wisconsin told her to make contact with police, shortly after the infant was reported missing last Thursday morning. She was in custody for more than a day before police found Powell Friday morning, wrapped in blankets and placed in a storage tote behind a gas station.

Smith has been charged in federal court with kidnapping, but U.S. Marshals are reportedly waiting to take her into custody until a federal grand jury in Madison reviews the case and hands down an indictment.