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Woman Who Raised Kidnapped Baby Told Her She Was Adopted, Report Says

By DNAinfo Staff on January 22, 2011 4:56pm  | Updated on January 22, 2011 2:53pm

By Olivia Scheck

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

MANHATTAN — The woman who raised Carlina White, the now-grown-up baby that was kidnapped from Harlem Hospital, told her that she was adopted, White’s father told the New York Daily News.

"[She told her] her mother had died, that her father was in jail and that she was put up for adoption," Carl Tyson, White’s father, reportedly explained.

White, now 23, was stolen from Harlem Hospital on Aug. 4, 1987, after being brought in by her mother, Joy White, for a high fever.

She was raised in Bridgeport, Conn., under a different name, by a woman called Ann Pettway.

White wasn’t reunited with her biological parents until last weekend when she recognized a picture of herself as an infant on the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children website.

Carlina White, now 23, was reunited with her birth mother after being kidnapped at just 19 days old.
Carlina White, now 23, was reunited with her birth mother after being kidnapped at just 19 days old.
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Courtesy of Joy White

Now, Pettway is on the run, wanted by the FBI and the NYPD for questioning.

While the 55-year-old resident of Raleigh, N.C. has not yet been charged, she is required to stay in the state of North Carolina, under parole conditions from a previous embezzlement conviction.

"They think it was Ann who took the baby," Tyson told the News, referring to Pettway, adding that he hopes to one day confront her face-to-face.

White’s grandmother, Elizabeth White, 71, told DNAinfo that she wanted to see Pettway prosecuted for the 23-year-old kidnapping.