Doorbell Camera Catches Woman Allegedly Kidnapping Four Children On Their Way To School

Photo: Courtesy of Detroit Police Department
Video of Stephanie Marie Binder kidnapping children

A group of four siblings were headed to school around 7:00 a.m. on Tuesday, November 30th, when Stephanie Marie Binder pulled up next to them in a white minivan and abducted them.

A 11-year-old boy, an 8-year-old girl, a 7-year-old girl and a 5-year-old boy had a morning filled with fear before they were fortunately returned safely to the family.

But not before the incident was caught on camera.

A video shows the woman allegedly kidnap the four children.

A nearby doorbell camera was able to capture the moment when Binder stopped her car in front of the group of kids, who are blocked by a tree and allegedly get them into her car.

A police officer’s quick thinking was able to prevent these kids from any further harm.

Officials said during a press conference on the day of Binder’s arraignment that two police officers pulled over the 37-year-old woman in the area of Grand River and Evergreen avenues for running a red light.

According to authorities, when the police officer neared the passenger side of the white minivan, they saw the children in the back seats.

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“Once the officers stopped, they see that there are children in the back crying,” a prosecutor said. “They ask Ms. Binder, ‘Are these your children?’ and she says yes. They are not her children. The officers, due to the emotions of the children in the back — they ask if they know this woman, and the children shake their heads. At this point, Ms. Binder is detained.”

Apparently, Binder was driving a stolen van when she decided to abduct the children and was charged with kidnapping — child enticement, four counts of unlawful imprisonment, one count of unlawfully driving away of an automobile and one count of receiving and concealing a stolen motor vehicle.

“Had the officers not pulled them over, who knows where these children would be?” said a prosecutor, adding that Binder admitted that she had never met the children before and had no authority to pick them up — she has no relation to the children whatsoever.

The children were reportedly forcibly pushed into the van.

“There were four children walking to school,” a prosecutor said. “Ms. Binder approached in a stolen van that she admittedly stole and lured the children into her van and drove away with the children, telling them she was taking them to school.”

“The youngest child got into the van,” said the prosecutor, “at which time the oldest child, who is 11, tried to grab his brother back, but Ms. Binder got out of the car and pushed them toward her van, telling them to get in.”

Binder was arraigned Friday in 36th District Court and is being held on a $5 million bond — if she were to be released, she would have to wear a GPS tether and remain on house arrest and would be prohibited from having any contact with the victims.

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According to the authorities, Binder has a lengthy criminal history including multiple retail frauds, multiple failures to appear warrants, a drug conviction, and she was discharged from parole in April after leaving the scene of a deadly crash in which she was at fault.

The mother is happy that her kids are home.

"I want to thank everyone that my children are back home safe," said Shayla Burleigh. "I hope she gets the maximum sentence. I can't say what I really want to say."

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Officer Flannel and Officer Parrish of the Detroit Police Department expressed their relief after saving the kidnapped children during that same press conference.

"I have kids at home,” said Officer Flannel, “so it actually gave me joy to get these kids back home with their mother."

"When it comes to policing sometimes it’s the right place at the right time," said Officer Parrish. "That day I feel like I was at the right place at the right time - and I am happy they’re at home with you."

A “not guilty” plea was entered on Binder’s behalf. There will be a probable cause conference held on Dec. 14 while the preliminary examination is scheduled for Dec. 21.

"I cried, I just cried - when I saw my daughter she ran up to me and gave me the biggest hug," their mother said. "I’m just happy that they were not harmed."

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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics. Follow him on Twitter here.