Ann Pettway Sentenced To 12 Years In Jail For Kidnapping Baby 25 Years Ago
It looks like a plea deal is paying off for Ann Pettway, the woman who dressed as a nurse to kidnap baby Carlina White from a Harlem Hospital and raise her as her own. You may remember the stories of how White found her real parents last year, when she was already in her 20’s. Pettway was sentenced to 12 years in jail after pleading guilty to the kidnapping charges this February:
The notorious “kidnap mom” who dressed as a nurse to snatch a sickly newborn from Harlem Hospital in 1987 — then cruelly raised the girl as her own in Connecticut while the baby’s parents in Manhattan were left shattered — was sentenced yesterday to 12 years in prison.
The federal prison term for baby snatcher Ann Pettway, 50, amounts to little more than half the virtual lifetime she robbed from Carl Tyson and Joy White, and their daughter Carlina White, now 24, who tracked down her real parents last year.
Long-suffering dad Tyson — who wanted much more prison time for his daughter’s brazen abductor — complained bitterly that Manhattan federal Judge Kevin Castel “didn’t have sympathy” for his plight.
“If this had happened to the judge, how would he feel?” Tyson said outside court.
Earlier, Tyson and Joy White laid bare the anguish they suffered after losing their 19-day-old baby girl nearly 25 years ago.
Both parents said they were still struggling to build relationships with the now-grown Carlina White, who was raised by Pettway in Bridgeport as Nejdra Nance, since their miraculous reunion last year.
“I love my daughter, and I want to be there for her,” Joy White, 41, said as she read from prepared remarks.
“But it breaks my heart listening to her speak about her ‘auntie’ or her ‘little brother,’ when, in fact, she is not talking about our family but another family that has claimed her as their own.”
“It not only breaks my heart, but the hearts of her real family,” she added.
Pettway never looked at Joy White throughout the real mom’s five-minute statement in Manhattan federal court.
But she coolly locked eyeballs with Tyson, 47, as he lamented never getting to celebrate his daughter’s first birthday or see her off to school.
“If you think I should have sympathy for you, I don’t,” he said.
“What they should give is 23 years, which you took away from me. And that really hurts.”
Tyson visibly struggled to express himself after Pettway met his angry gaze, and he admitted afterward that “it was really hard” to speak in court because of the overwhelming anger he struggled to contain.
“I wanted to reach over there and really strangle her, to be honest with you,” he said. “That’s how I felt.”
Pettway has been locked up since surrendering to authorities last year after The Post broke the news that Carlina White had tracked down her real parents through the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children after Pettway admitted she was not her real mom.
Carlina, now living outside Atlanta, didn’t attend the sentencing.
“This is a really tough time right now, and I just really don’t want to talk about it,” she told The Post yesterday.
Last year, one of Pettway’s public defenders said Carlina would seek leniency for the woman she had believed was her mother for more than two decades, but court papers filed last week said she “has declined to speak with either defense counsel, the government or the probation department.”
The defense submission also noted that Carlina White “has a movie project in the works and refuses to be involved in any way in the criminal case.”
Castel cut Pettway a huge break from the 20-year sentence that prosecutors had sought and even imposed less than the 14-year minimum that he calculated under nonbinding federal guidelines.
“This was not a crime of greed. It was not a crime of vengeance,” Castel noted. “But it was an act of selfishness, a crime of selfishness.”
Clad in navy-blue jail clothing, she spoke in a soft, quavering voice as she “would like to apologize to the family.”
“They may not accept my apology and maybe reject it, but I am deeply sorry for what I have done,” she said.
Public defender Sabrina Shroff accused prosecutors of breaching Pettway’s plea deal by asking for 20 years behind bars after agreeing that she should face no more than 12-plus years.
Shroff also insisted Pettway — who had suffered two stillbirths and several miscarriages before the kidnapping — “was not functioning as a healthy, normal adult” when she abducted Carlina.
SMH. Is it enough time? How do you think Ann Pettway will fare in jail? And what’s up with Carlina acting so detached? Is she just trying to cash in on her misfortune?