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VALENTINE BABY THEFT-1968?
LUANNE PRUESNER PROVIDES BREAKTHROUGH
February 14, 2002, ABC Affilliate KESQ-TV, Palm Springs, reporter
interviews missing persons investigator, Lori Carangelo, regarding
missing child, Danielle Van Dam, and Lori's "Valentine Search" for the
truth about what happened to her own daughter.
to reach Lori Carangelo on Facebook
Also View our Family Tree and DNA results at the Ancestry website
Were you born VALENTINE'S DAY, Feb 14, 1968 ?
Is your Santa Barbara, CA Birth Certificate Number #396 ?
Did you have have black hair when you were born ?
Are you adopted, or do you suspect you are adopted ?
Searchers told me my baby (reportedly a girl, perhaps a boy) was stolen
or switched at birth for a stillborn infant on February 14, 1968 within
2 hours of birth. Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital's medical records about
the birth were withheld from my
access as CA law permitted at the time. I obtained them 23 years later
and was shocked to learn that they do not describe my baby who I saw
close up, minutes after birth. The hospital had no explanation. The
attending physician died in 1973, her records destroyed. Police refused
to investigate. A newspaper story produced no leads. There's no grave,
no DNA to test.
There are at least 9 discrepencies in the hospital record, including
physical description of the baby which conflicts with what I saw close
up, plus absence of identifiers such as blood type, footprint, newborn
photo, prenatal and post-natal heartbeat monitoring record, Xrays. etc.
Over the past 12 years, I had tracked down, spoken with, and
eliminated every female born on February 14, 1968 at Cottage Hospital
and in Santa Barbara County as possibly being my daughter. But there
was a sealed birth certificate on Vital Records' 1968 roll of microfilm
which eluded identification for several years. Only the local birth
certificate number, #396, was displayed, on the microfilm, along with
the 1972 delayed filing date, indicating an adoption. Although there
were other sealed birth certificates in 1968, the fact that #396 was
only 5 numbers away from my daughter's, #391 certificate, yet it wasn't
filed until 1972, compelled me to try to find out who that record
belonged to and the circumstances.
In early October, 2002, veteran adoption searcher, Luanne Pruesner,
herself an adoptee, volunteered to assist my search without fee and said
she was not interested in any reward in the event she might find my
daughter alive. [A Link to Luanne's website is at the bottom of
Despite that other searchers had told me it would be "impossible"
to find the adoptee I had been seeking, Luanne persisted and very
quickly discovered her. We both felt that even if this adoptee was not
my daughter, something was "not right.". Within hours Luanne informing
me the adoptee's current identity is Deana M. Villegas, I was speaking
with Deane by phone and established that she could not be my daughter.
Deana was "born blonde," she says, and my daughter was born with thick
black hair. We found that we shared many opinions on adoption issues
and I began to have peace of mind that my daughter was probably NOT
switched or stolen at birth--At least, I had left no stone unturned in
More Loose Ends
Still a mystery, is the question of why my daughter's records do
not match the baby I gave birth to, and why Deana birth certificate,
indicating date of birth February 4, 1968, is filed out of sequence by 2
weeks. She says she never knew her father; that her mother remarried a
year after her birth, and that her step-father then adopted her. She
had searched for her biological father but was provided no information
by anyone, even her mother. Yet, she says, when her biological father
died, her step-father informed her about his obituary in the newspaper.
Falsification and secrecy of birth records in adoption, coupled
with questionable accuracy of medical records, makes it easy for
accidental and intentional "baby switches" and kidnappings to go
undetected, even with today's safeguards for identifying which baby
belongs to which mother. I have heard from many mothers whose babies
reportedly died at birth but who question whether they may have actually
been stolen, perhaps for black market adoption, because "something's not
right." There have been many cases where the doctor did lie, telling
the mother "the baby died" and decades later that "dead baby" turned upas a searching adoptee, much to the mother's shock. One highly
publicized example is the Georgia Tann/Tennessee Home Society scandal
involving over 5,000 stolen babies sold for adoption. A Link to Jo Anne
Swanson, PI, and her Baby Theft cases is at the bottom of this page.
Depression from loss of a child that did die may continue for
years. Unsolved cases where there is are unanswered questions, can
prolong that grief for life.
Nowadays, some hospitals will permit the mother of a baby that died
to see and hold that baby one last time, if she wishes, to "say goodbye
and close it out ." I, like other mothers who continue to search for
the truth, did not have that opportunity.
In none of the recent media attention to Amber Alerts for rescuing
kidnapped kids, was there any concern for newborns and young children
being kidnapped for black market adoption. How do we help prevent child
theft for adoption? A few basic changes needed, for starters:
Require uniform birth certificates in all states. There
are now so many versions possible from state to state and even
between state, county, hospital and baptismal birth records,
that it's easy to fool authorties and the child as to the
legitimacy of a child's parentage.
Require that the infant or child be present when the court
reviews petitions concerning "voluntary" relinquishments,
termination of parental rights and petitions to adopt or
otherwise transfer custody of a child.
Immigration (INS) need to require stricter controls so
that we know whether
children who are being taken out of the country for
foreign adoption are not
The United Nations and Hague Conferences need to be less
diplomacy and more concerned with U.S. Dept. of State
policy that kidnapping
of foreign children is okay if deemed "in their best
interests" to then be adopted
under state secerecy laws.
Take the money and profiteering out of family law matters,
Abolish adoption in favor of alternative forms of custody
that are truly in child's
2-21-99, NEWS OF PRIOR BABY MIX-UPS STUNS OFFICIALS
Los Angeles Times, front page. Orange - "State Medical
officials said Saturday that St. Joseph Hospital did not inform them about
newsly disclosed infant mix-ups and vowed to expand their investigation into
practices at the maternity ward. Barbara McGowan, a state investigator for
the Department of Health Services, said she was 'dumbfounded' to learn about
the prior incidents, including one in which a mother breast-fed the wrong
baby for 30 minutes....The action comes nearly a week after the hospital
sent a newborn home with the wrong family on
and a day after officials acknowledged three other infant mix-ups in the
CARANGELO v. CONNECTICUT
A Case of Lifelong Opposition to Government Protected Child Stealing
Adopted Angels/Angel Moms
support for Moms of terminally ill & deceased children
"ABOLISH ADOPTION" - A PETITION
Click here for BLACK MARKET ADOPTEE'S REGISTRY (Free):
KIDS FOR SALE WEBSITE
Tons of Linked Resources!!
ALLEGED "BABY DIED" CASES,
SWITCHED & STOLEN BABIES
chronological excerpted newsclips,
"If you call the FBI office in the state you were born, they will send
you a "Freedom of Information Act" form to fill out to see if they can
place you with being a BLACK MARKET baby. This is all new to me. I
have been searching for 22 years. I just heard of this. Hoping it
will help someone else, too. Much love for your input and helping me. "
- Nancy Sharp Strong