Police search for couple accused of trying to sell child at gas station

Police search for couple accused of trying to sell child at gas station

HAMMOND, LA (WAFB) - Police said they are still trying to figure out exactly what happened after a bizarre 911 call that sent them searching for a man and a woman who may have been trying to sell a girl at a gas station Friday morning.

The Hammond Police Department said the woman is accused of trying to sell her daughter, who is believed to be around 10 years old. It happened at the RaceTrac on US 190 in Hammond around 9 a.m. It is right off I-55.

"I don't see how someone could do that," said Tony Mayo of Ponchatoula. "I think that's awful," added Malia Gill of Hammond.

People were shocked when they learned of what police said was a mother trying to sell her own daughter. Police reported they received the 911 call around 9:25 a.m. A woman stated while she was at the gas station, there was a dark-colored van with Florida license plates. The van was occupied by a man, a woman and a girl. The caller added the woman appeared to be pregnant.

"They came up to several people, first begging for money for gas, and then, ultimately came to one person and offered to sell the child," said Lt. Vince Giannobile with the Hammond Police Department.

He added it was a Hispanic couple and the child was their daughter. A "be on the lookout" (BOLO) alert was put out for a 2005 blue Dodge Caravan with a Florida license plate - BSXR89.

"It's kind of unusual. I don't think we've had anything like this in a while," Giannobile explained.

"I raised four children. I would have never had dreamed of giving my children up for nothing. I've been in bad shape. I've had a hard time bringing up kids, but you don't give up your kids. It just doesn't happen," Mayo added.

"I have a daughter and I never thought I would be a mother and that is my angel. She saved me and I just can't imagine hurting even an animal. I don't understand how you can have your own blood and then sell your own blood," Gill said.

There is no description of the man.

If you have seen the couple or know where they may be, you are urged to call 911 immediately.

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