Amber Alert in Florida linked to Slidell - FOX 8, WVUE,, weather, app, news, saints

Amber Alert in Florida linked to Slidell

Joshua and Sharyn Hakken (photos from Joshua and Sharyn Hakken (photos from
Cole and Chase Hakken (photos from Cole and Chase Hakken (photos from

A nationwide Amber Alert has been issued for a couple who kidnapped their two sons from their home in Florida, following a Louisiana court's decision to award custody of the boys to their maternal grandmother.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office in Tampa names Joshua Hakken and his wife Sharyn as suspects in the kidnapping.  The S.O. released this statement to news media Wednesday night:

Today at 6:40 am [EDT], the abducted children's maternal grandmother dialed 911 from inside 14xxx Shady Oaks Drive in Tampa. Her husband, the children's grandfather had already left for work and was not at home.

Apparently just after 6 am, Joshua Hakken broke into the home and tied up his mother-n-law. He then woke his two children and removed them from the home while still in their pajamas. Hakken then stole his mother-n-law's car and fled the residence. The victim then managed to free herself and call 911.

During the investigation, detectives have since located the victim's stolen vehicle abandoned several block from the crime scene. Detectives believe Joshua and the kids entered a second vehicle once abandoning his mother-n-law's vehicle and fled the area to an unknown destination.

A Florida state wide Amber alert has been issued for the 2006 GMC pick-up Sierra, black in color, bearing Florida tag U95-KT....

We still have un-answered questions from the events in Louisiana prior to today's events here in Hillsborough County. We are working closely with the FBI and government officials in the State of Louisiana to attempt to obtain a better picture of the history of this family and the circumstances which lead to the removal of the children from their parent custody and ultimately the terminations of all parental rights.

What we have learned so far -- and keep in mind this [is] still preliminary -- that on June 17th 2012, the father Joshua Hakken was arrested in a hotel on multiple drug charges in St Tammany Parish, Louisiana after attending some type of anti-government rally.

Some point after that arrest, the State of Louisiana took custody of both children and placed them temporarily in foster care. While in foster care, Joshua Hakken allegedly showed up at the foster care facility waving a gun and began beating on the front door. He fled the scene without his children after he was unable to enter the secured facility. I do not have any information on a case status of that event.

Yesterday, the Hakken's were notified that the State of Louisiana terminated all parental rights and turned over those rights to the grandparents.

We are withholding the name of the grandmother at this time; also she has indicated she does not want to conduct any media interviews at this time.

A statement Wednesday evening from Louisiana State Police confirmed they have issued their own Level II - Endangered/Missing Advisory, "as the biological parents and children may be traveling to or through Louisiana... Their parental rights were recently terminated and they have ties in the Slidell, LA area. "

Joshua Hakken now faces a variety of criminal charges: two counts of kidnapping, two counts of interference in child custody, two counts of child neglect, and one count each of false imprisonment, burglary with a battery and grand theft auto.

State Police say Joshua Hakken is a 35-year-old white male, believed to be 5-feet-11 in height and weighing about 180 pounds. 

Sharyn Hakken is a 34-year-old white female, standing 5-feet-4 and weighing about 150 pounds.

The boys are 2-year-old Chase Hakken (3-feet-0, 33 pounds) and 4-year-old Cole Hakken (3-feet-9, 44 pounds).  Both children have brown hair.

La. State Police say the black 2006 GMC pickup mentioned as the Hakkens' possible vehicle has a University of South Florida tag, number U95KT.

Again, if you have any information on the whereabouts of the Hakkens, please dial your local authorities at 911 or the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office at 813-247-8200.

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