BASTROP, Texas (KXAN) - The woman who police said had taken her two biological children from their Bastrop home early Thursday surrendered to Austin police around 2 p.m. after a standoff that lasted several hours. She does not have legal custody of the children, police said.
Police said the 28-year-old mother, identified as Valonda Nora, came out of the home in the 5100 block of Blue Spruce Circle without incident. Two warrants charging her with kidnapping were issued during the standoff, police said.
The children, who are ages 5 and 8, were not harmed. The 8-year-old has a medical condition and officials were concerned because his medication was left at the Bastrop home. Officials did not provide the genders of the children.
"It's always a good ending when you have a situation like this and you can end it peacefully. No injuries to citizens, the children and the officers involved," said Austin Police Department Officer Gilbert Coraballo.
The incident started around 4 a.m. when the children were taken from their home in Bastrop. The custodial guardian, the children's great-grandmother, told police she last saw them at midnight. When she went to check on them again at 4 a.m., they were missing.
APD became involved, and once they arrived at the home in Austin, the officers requested assistance from the SWAT unit. Nora barricaded herself in the residence and initially refused to cooperate.
The East Austin neighborhood where the standoff occurred remained quiet throughout.
The woman has a past criminal record with multiple arrests, including a police standoff situation in 2011.
Child Protective Services confirmed that the mother lost custody of the two children in March 2010. The maternal great-grandmother became legal guardian and adopted the two children in November 2011.
The two children were examined by emergency medical services workers and safely returned to their great-grandmother.
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