Long Beach police said the slaying of a baby earlier this year was part of a bizarre kidnapping plot masterminded by a woman who was trying to convince her boyfriend that she had given birth to twins.
The woman, Giseleangelique Rene D’Milian, 47, had told her married boyfriend that she had given birth while she was overseas when in fact she had not, police said.
She then plotted to snatch a boy and a girl to pass off as her own, officials said at a news conference Wednesday afternoon.
“We’ve never seen anything like this where somebody goes out looking for babies to kidnap and they attempt to kill the mothers,” said Long Beach Police Chief Robert Luna. “These people are just evil in nature.”
D’Milian identified possible children to abduct by claiming to have a charity organization that assisted mothers of infant children, police said.
That charity, investigators allege, is how she learned of three-week-old Eliza Delacruz, who was abducted on Jan. 3 and found dead the following day in an Imperial Beach Dumpster.
On the day of the kidnapping, police say D’Milian drove a dark-colored Range Rover, trailing Delacruz and her mother as they rode on a Long Beach bus.
After the mother and child got off the bus and walked home, D’Milian pulled up to them in her car, police said.
It was a “basic conversation” that didn’t leave the girl’s mother with any suspicion that “something was going to happen” later, said Long Beach police Lt. Lloyd Cox.
Nearly two hours later, D’Milian’s accomplice, Anthony McCall, allegedly stormed the Delacruz family’s home in the 100 block of West 51st Street, shot the baby’s parents and uncle and whisked the girl away.
How Delacruz died and was disposed in Imperial Beach was not released, but police linked the child’s kidnapping to a brutal assault at an El Segundo hotel.
On Feb. 6, police in El Segundo responded to the hotel in the 2000 block of East Mariposa Avenue where a 23-year-old woman had been beaten with a baseball bat, police said.
The suspected assailant, later identified as McCall, fled the scene when employees of the hotel knocked on the woman’s hotel room, just before police officers arrived, said El Segundo Police Chief Rich Tavera.
A four-month-old boy was found inside the hotel room. D’Milian knew the boy’s mother for several years and was aware that she had recently given birth, police later learned.
On Wednesday, Long Beach police arrested D’Milian, 47, of Thousand Oaks, along with McCall, 29, of Oceanside. Both are accused of murder, kidnapping, attempted murder and conspiracy.
Police also arrested two people on suspicion of accessory after the fact: Todd Boudreaux, 44, of Fontana and Charisse Shelton, 30, of Corona.
Shelton -- who is D’Milian’s daughter -- along with Boudreaux both are accused of covering up the crimes, Luna said.
D’Milian, McCall and Boudreaux are being held without bail in the Long Beach City Jail, police said. Shelton is being held on $1 million bail, also in the city jail, police said.
All four are expected to be arraigned Friday.
Other mothers of infants may have been in contact with D’Milian’s purported charity, and investigators are asking anyone with information to contact the Long Beach Police Department.
A $25,000 reward had been announced for information leading to the capture and convictions of Eliza’s killers. It’s unclear how or if the money will be designated, police said.
On Wednesday, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia praised the Police Department for “going above and beyond the call of duty.”
“Our Police Department became obsessed with solving this mystery and bringing justice for this family,” Garcia added.