Big Bear, CA, December 3, 2014 – A mother accused of kidnapping her son from the child’s father and taking him to Mexico, pled guilty on November 20th to felony child abduction charges and was sentenced to 6 months in County Jail and 5 years probation.
On November 6th, investigators from the Child Abduction Unit of the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office recovered 3-year-old Anthony Tummarello, Jr. at the Calexico Border Patrol Station and were able to reunite him with his father later that same night.
The boy’s mother, Melissa Epperley, of Sugarloaf, had withheld Anthony, Jr. from his father since February 2013 without the father’s consent and had been wanted on charges of kidnapping and child abduction. The defendants’s mother, Wanda Epperley, also of Sugarloaf, was charged with aiding and abetting in the abduction and pled guilty to misdemeanor child abduction.
The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, Big Bear Station, assisted in the investigation.