Deputies: Flagler County mom charged with kidnapping her 2 kids

Mother lost custody after driving high with children in back seat, deputies say


PALM COAST, Fla. – A Flagler County mother who lost custody of her children after deputies said she drove high with her children in the car is now facing two kidnapping charges, according to the Flagler County Sheriff's Office.

Deputies said Sara Jones wrecked her vehicle and endangered her children, ages 3 and 5, when she drove while under the influence of methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana with her children in the back seat.

The Department of Children and Families took custody of the children and placed them with their great-grandparents.

Deputies said the great-grandparents put the children to bed Friday night. They were missing the next morning, along with their clothes, toothbrushes and toys.

The great-grandparents told deputies that Jones had a key to the home but they had not given her permission to come into the home overnight or to take the children.

They said she had threatened last week to take the children, and they believed she was headed to Tennessee, where the children's father lives.

As investigators were at their home, the great-grandparents got a call from someone who said he'd heard children's voices during a call with the children's father. Deputies at the Monroe County (Tenn.) Sheriff's Office were called in to check out the tip and found the children in Sweetwater, Tennessee, with their other grandmother.

DCF in Tennessee took custody of the children and is coordinating with Florida DCF to return them to their legal guardians.

Flagler detectives obtained a warrant charging Jones with two counts of kidnapping. She was arrested by the MCSO and is being held in the Monroe County Jail on a $25,000 bond pending extradition to Flagler County.

“I’m thankful these children are safe and out of harms way,” said Sheriff Rick Staly. “Our detectives worked quickly with DCF and Tennessee authorities to find these children and track down the mother. You cannot interfere in custody issues ordered by a judge without risk of being arrested. These orders are done to protect children when their parents don’t and are not taken lightly. Parental abduction is against the law in Florida.”