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Amber Alert canceled; children unharmed, suspects in custody

Posted at 12:18 PM, Apr 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-21 00:01:46-04

SOUTH SALT LAKE, Utah — An Amber Alert issued Wednesday after two South Salt Lake children were kidnapped and two others are considered endangered after being taken by their mother and grandmother has been canceled.

Officials announced the cancellation at 3:23 p.m. South Salt Lake police said the children had been found unharmed and the suspects are in custody.

"We are so relieved and thrilled that we located the children, but there's a lot of work still left to be done in regards to what charges will be reviewed or booked for, and we'll also be coordinating with the District Attorney's Office on what charges would be potentially, filed," said Danielle Croyle with the South Salt Lake City Police Department.

All four children were located at a house in West Valley City.

“As far as recoveries go and finding the children it’s been extremely successful," said Captain Greg Willmore, Director of the Department of Public Safety Bureau of Criminal Investigation. "When the amber alert goes out it’s highly successful that that the child was recovered whether it was a direct or indirect result of the amber alert.”

Earlier, police said 2-month-old David Murillo and Oaklee Murillo, 2, were believed to be kidnapped by the mother, Yaneli Murillo, and Maria Alvarez after the Division of Child and Family Services was awarded custody of the children at a hearing Wednesday.

Instead of handing the children over, Murilo and Alvarez fled with both and later texted DCFS officials that the "children were killed or going to be killed."

Police hold briefing below after cancellation of Amber Alert

Amber Alert police briefing

Alvarez is the mother of the other children, Librado Beccera-Murillo, 9, and Rosa Estrella Beccera-Murillio, 11, who were removed from school and were considered endangered due to prior threats having been made.

Maria Alvarez.jpg
Photo of Maria Alvarez

In 2020, seven amber alerts were issued in Utah. In 2021, 8 were issued and three amber alerts have already been issued in 2022.

“The overall goal is to recover the child safely and quickly," Willmore explained.

Police thanked the media and the public for getting information out regarding the Amber Alert, which helped locate the children.