Sheriff: Suspect In California Family Kidnapping Has History Of Theft Pixabay

A man reportedly kidnapped his girlfriend's 1-year-old boy and used the child as a human shield against officers outside a McDonald's in Flagler County, Florida.

The accused, identified as 27-year-old Brandon Leohner, abducted his girlfriend's 1-year-old child while armed with a handgun at his girlfriend's home on Bunker Lane in Palm Coast, about 60 miles south of Jacksonville, on the evening of Sept 27. After abducting the baby, Leohner fled the scene and drove away with the child in his lap, NBC News reported.

Following the abduction, officers from the Flagler County Sheriff's Office were alerted about the incident. The officers responded to the scene and tried to pull Leohner over after he drove recklessly through medians and sped on Belle Terre Parkway.

Despite several attempts by law enforcement to run a traffic stop, Leohner did not comply and instead fled east onto State Road 100, driving through oncoming traffic, and drove into a nearby McDonald's parking lot in a shopping center.

Leohner then got out of his vehicle near the McDonald's drive-thru with the 1-year-old in his arms. He reportedly used the child as a human shield against the officers and refused to listen to commands to obey law enforcement commands to put the child down, the Independent reported.

After a brief standoff between the officers and Leohner, deputies used a Taser on Leohner and rescued the child. Leohner then tried to flee and resist arrest. However, a K-9 dog and a Taser brought him under control, and he was placed in handcuffs and taken into custody. Following this, he was taken to a medical center to be treated for his wounds.

Leohner was arrested and charged with kidnapping, using a minor as a shield, resisting with violence, child neglect, fleeing and eluding, and reckless driving and was booked at the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility, where he remains on a $61,000 bond.

“Here is a case of a domestic situation turning violent, putting a 1-year-old child and innocent drivers in danger,” Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly said in a statement. “Fortunately, the child was not hurt and was quickly reunited with his mother.”

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