Suspect extradited; mother, daughter reunited

Curry County Sheriff’s Department officers David Kube, left, and Waldo Casarez escort Rayshaun Parson into Magistrate Court on Monday morning in Clovis. Parson waived extradition and was transported to Lubbock. (CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks)

Staff and wire reports

In a soft, barely audible voice, a 21-year-old Clovis woman acknowledged in a Clovis court Monday she was the person sought by Texas authorities in connection with Saturday’s kidnapping of a 3-day old infant from a Lubbock hospital.

Rayshaun Parson was back in Lubbock on Monday night after waiving extradition during her Clovis court appearance, according to authorities.

“You’re willing to be extradited into Texas to answer to these charges?” Curry County Magistrate Judge Richard Hollis asked.

“Yes,” Parson answered quietly.

Parson, who will face charges of kidnapping in Lubbock County, is scheduled for an initial appearance in federal court today in Lubbock.

Police found Mychael Darthard-Dawodu, then 4 days old, in Clovis on Sunday, a day after she was taken from Lubbock’s Covenant Lakeside Hospital.

The infant didn’t utter a peep as her mother, Caisha Darthard, gently stroked her cheek during a news conference Monday in Lubbock.

“We’re just happy to have her back,” said the little girl’s grandfather, Darrell Darthard.

The family took no questions.

“It’s not that we’re not grateful,” Darrell Darthard said. “We just want some privacy with the family and to spend some time with her.”

Baby Mychael was taken from her mother’s hospital room early Saturday by a woman posing as a medical worker who walked out of Covenant Lakeside with the infant hidden in her purse, police said.

Law enforcement officials received information from more than one source that the 5-pound, 7-ounce baby was in Clovis, authorities said. Police found the girl in a home with an adult female early Sunday, Lubbock police Lt. Scott Hudgens said.
Parson was found at another home, he said.

Parson had told people at an apartment complex in Clovis that she was pregnant, “but never really was,” according to an FBI affidavit describing the statement of a woman who tipped police Saturday.

In an affidavit filed in court Monday, a witness said Rayshaun had reportedly gone to her boyfriend and told him the child was his, Lubbock TV station KCDB reported.

“We’ve been talking, and she’s sick,” Ann Parson, the suspect’s grandmother, told the TV station. “There’s some things going on. Every family has problems, and right now this is the problem our family has to deal with.”

Mychael on Sunday was flown home to her mother and her father, Michael A. Dawodu, after she was evaluated at Plains Regional Medical Center in Clovis.

Parson has had dealings with the law before. In May 2004, a protective order was issued against her in a domestic violence incident involving a boyfriend, according to New Mexico online court documents.

In January 2005, she was charged with fraud, according to court documents. A call seeking information about the case was not returned Monday.

Covenant Lakeside said it places identification bands on infants and parents immediately at birth and refers to “a number of other security measures” on its Web site. Gwen Stafford, senior vice president of Covenant Health System, said the hospital plans to further tighten security.

Parson pleaded guilty to the New Mexico charge of fugitive from justice Monday in Clovis.