Two Oklahoma City children were taken into state care after their caretaker fled with them out of the state.
Police arrested Carey Johnson, 44, and Michael Coulter, 50, on Thursday night near Interstate 40 and Choctaw Road.
An Oklahoma Department of Human Services worker reported to police on Thursday that Aaliyah Frazier, 11, and her 10-month-old brother Jamari Dupree were missing and in danger.
An arrest warrant for Johnson, the children’s guardian, revealed that DHS had a court order to get the kids from Johnson's southeast Oklahoma City home. When the DHS worker arrived at the home, there were no signs of Johnson or the children.
The warrant also states Johnson told the worker, "If I can't have the kids, then she (biological mother) can't either."
The mother recently brought in DHS to get her children back.
“It is unclear what went on with them,” said MSgt. Gary Knight, Oklahoma City Police Department. “But at some point, the woman who had the children, in charge of their care, she had the kids for a while and decided to flee with them.”
Johnson and Coulter, a convicted sex offender, took off with the kids. Police issued a missing and endangered child alert on Thursday.
Court papers indicate Johnson, Coulter and the children went to Arkansas and returned to Oklahoma. The SUV they were driving was spotted near I-40 and Choctaw Road and officers arrested the man and woman.
“Found the children in the vehicle,” said Knight. “They were just fine, unharmed and placed into DHS custody.”
A neighbor who lives down the street from Johnson reacted to the news of the children being found.
“I’m glad they are back safe,” said Tammara Lucero. “But just sad.”
Lucero said she often saw the man walking with the 11-year-old girl.
“As far as I knew, he was her dad,” said Lucero.
She was alarmed to learn Coulter is a sex offender and the children’s uncle.
“Very strange, very odd, very disturbing,” said Lucero. “Very concerning.”
Johnson was arrested on one complaint of child stealing. Coulter was also arrested on one complaint of child stealing and one count of felon in possession of a firearm.