2 Pa. girls found safe; Amber Alert canceled
Cops: Father threatened girls' mother with gun before abduction
Police say a Pennsylvania man who abducted his two young daughters after threatening their mother with a firearm, prompting an Amber Alert, has been taken into custody at a Berks County hotel.
Hostyn Perez-Corza, who authorities said is in the country illegally, allegedly took the girls -- 6-year-old Dania Perez and 8-year-old Janeth Perez -- from their West Reading residence on Thursday evening. The three were located this morning in the lobby of a Bern Township hotel.
The 23-year-old Perez-Corza pointed a gun at their mother and pulled her into the home when she arrived to pick up the girls at about 9 p.m. Thursday, Joseph Brown, an investigator with the West Reading police, said at a news conference.
The woman escaped and called authorities from a friend's home. When police went to the residence, Perez-Corza and the girls were gone, prompting authorities to put out an Amber Alert.
The alert was issued "for concern that he was going to harm the children," Brown said. He said police had learned that Perez-Corza had planned to harm the girls' mother.
"He was actively looking for her last night to kill her," Brown said.
But he said investigators didn't know yet what motivated that attack, why Perez-Corza took the girls or where he planned on going.
The alert, which erroneously spelled Perez-Corza's first name as Hostin, was issued for Berks, Chester, Lebanon, Lehigh, Montgomery and Schuylkill counties.
The trio was located when someone pointed out Perez-Corza's Ford Expedition to a Bern Township police officer on patrol near a Quality Inn and Suites.
He was located in the hotel lobby and arrested after a struggle with officers, officials said. One officer suffered a minor hand injury in the scuffle.
Perez-Corza is facing charges of aggravated assault and other offenses. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has also lodged a detainer against him.
Brown said Perez-Corza was deported in 2010, and it wasn't immediately known when and how he returned to the United States. He had been working as a laborer, Brown said.