Birmingham, AL – Police have expanded an Alabama AMBER Alert to include all surrounding states as they continue to search for a three-year-old girl believed to have been kidnapped on Saturday.
Investigators believe the missing toddler may be in extreme danger, WMAZ reported.
Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith told reporters at a press conference on Monday that authorities had begun looking beyond state lines for Kamille “Cupcake” McKinney, WBRC reported.
“We want to make sure that her picture, her face, is out there in the media so that everyone, even in the surrounding states, knows who she is,” Chief Smith said.
The toddler was taken from the front yard of a home in Tom Brown Village at about 8:30 p.m. on Oct. 12 during an outdoor birthday party, WBRC reported.
The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency said an older, dark-colored SUV pulled up and a woman snatched Kamille up into the vehicle before they drove off, WMAZ reported.
The family did not immediately call the police, but instead, searched the neighborhood themselves first for the missing toddler, WBRC reported.
“As many families think that they can resolve their issue on their own, they think that they can do just a quick search of the neighborhood or area to find a missing person or missing child,” Chief Smith told reporters. “There was a little bit of a delay in getting the information to law enforcement so we can conduct a thorough grid search of the entire area before putting out an AMBER Alert.”
The AMBER Alert for Kamille was issued at 12:06 a.m. on Sunday morning, almost four hours after the little girl was grabbed from the birthday party, according to WBRC.
Kamille, who goes by the nickname “Cupcake,” was last seen wearing a pink leopard-print t-shirt with Mickey Mouse on it and leopard print shorts. She was barefoot.
Chief Smith said police had taken two persons of interest into custody – a black man and a white woman who were believed to be linked to the kidnapping, Today reported.
Both suspects were being interviewed extensively by investigators.
The chief said investigators believed there were more suspects involved in the kidnapping.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey on Tuesday authorized a $5,000 reward for anyone with information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrators, as well as the location of Kamille, WBRC reported.
Ivey said her office was working closely with state and federal law enforcement agencies, according to Today.
“We offer our fervent prayers for law enforcement and all involved in the search,” the governor said in a statement. “We pray for Kamille’s family and that God will continue to watch over Kamille until she is safely returned home soon. Alabama, let’s bring Kamille home!”
Birmingham Police Deputy Chief Scott Praytor asked citizens to come forward with any information they might have about the missing three year old, Today reported.
“A child just being taken from the street is not common in Birmingham,” Chief Praytor said. “It’s imperative we find this child as quick as possible.”