Amber Alert: Baby found safe, Price woman charged with kidnapping daughter arrested

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According to Utah Highway Patrol Lt. Nick Steet, Jacqueline Gardner was arrested by UHP troopers in Lehi just before 6 p.m. About three hours later, Price City Police announced that the baby was found in Carbon County and the 5-week-old girl "appears to be healthy."

PRICE — Police in Price issued an Amber Alert Thursday afternoon for a missing infant.

The alert was issued about 2:45 p.m. Police are looking for Vallye Lorane Turner, 5-weeks-old, who has blonde hair, according to the Department of Public Safety.

Law enforcement is also looking for Jacqueline Gardner, 38, of Price, who is believed to have taken the child. She is believed to be driving a red Volkswagen Jetta with Utah license plate 2G4WZ. She is 5-foot-9, 165 pounds and has blonde hair and blue eyes, according to police.

Gardner was charged Wednesday in 7th District Court with child kidnapping, a first-degree felony. A warrant for her arrest was issued Thursday, according to court records.

Charging documents state that a hearing was scheduled in 7th District Court on Wednesday regarding the removal of Gardner's three children from her custody.

"Price city police were asked by DCFS to stage at the residence of Gardner during the hearing to observe Gardner's location, and to monitor whether Gardner might attempt to leave with the children during the hearing, pending a possible decision of the juvenile court to place the children with the Division of Child and Family Services," the charges state.

Just before 2 p.m. police observed Gardner and her sister, Amanda Turner Callaway, come out of the house and get into their mother's vehicle.

"It appeared to (police) that Gardner was using her hands to place items around something large in the rear seat of the vehicle, which he suspected may have been the infant child of Gardner. He did not observe a car seat in the vehicle. The vehicle then left the residence," according to the charges.

The vehicle went on several side streets before getting onto the highway, at which point the officer lost sight of the vehicle, the charges state. Two minutes later, police were informed that a judge had ordered that the children be removed from Gardner and placed into state protective custody.

Gardner had still been on the phone during this time and listening to her hearing. When the judge informed her to pull over and surrender her child, she hung up and did not answer any other calls, according to the charges.

When police spoke to Gardner's mother, she refused to give them information, the charges state.

"It was determined through the investigation that Amanda Callaway was driving the vehicle, and Jacqueline Gardner was in the back seat with the 5-week-old female child. Callaway and Gardner refused to have any further contact with officers or DCFS caseworkers in regards to this incident," the charges state.

Police say the last ping they were able to get from the phone was just before 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday and believe the phone is currently either turned off or has been destroyed.

Callaway, 40, of Price, was also charged Thursday with child kidnapping.

Anyone with information on Gardner's whereabouts is asked to call 911.

This story will be updated as more details become available.


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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.


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