• Baby thief blames miscarriages, depression

    By: Tom Jones


    JONESBORO, Ga. - The woman who posed as a nurse and  kidnapped a 2-day-old baby from a hospital said her depression from two miscarriages led her to commit the crime.

    Naquelle Ballard, 20, said she regrets what she did and apologizes to the baby's mother and family.

    "I know she was going through a lot of pain when I did what I did and I'm just sorry, I regret doing it. It was the biggest mistake I could have ever made in my life," Ballard told Channel 2's Tom Jones in an exclusive interview from the Clayton County Jail.

    Ballard gave that interview two days after she plead guilty to kidnapping and false imprisonment. A judge gave her a 20 -year sentence where she has to serve 10 behind bars and 10 on probation.

    One day after the sentencing, the district attorney's office released surveillance video from Southern Regional hospital that showed Ballard in hospital scrubs outside Jas'Mere Brown's room.

    She then goes inside and comes out with the infant. Ballard says when she went inside she had a conversation with Brown.

    "I think I started talking to her and then after that I got the baby and I left," Ballard said.

    The video shows Ballard struggling with maintenance workers as they yank the baby away and Ballard runs off. She was later arrested after the employees jotted down her tag number.

    Ballard said she took the child after she suffered two miscarriages and was depressed. She also said she did it to keep her boyfriend from leaving her.

    "I was in love with him and I felt like that was going to make him stay with me or I was going to keep him that way," Ballard explained. She said the boyfriend left anyway and hasn't contacted her.

    Ballard said she spent more than a month planning the crime and bought the scrubs from Walmart. She said she was in a fog and never thought about what she was doing.

    She does now. She repeatedly apologized to Brown and her family.

    "I'm sorry. I apologize. I really do," Ballard insisted.

    Ballard said she is a good person who made a big mistake.

    "I really wish I would have thought twice, three times about it, but I didn't," Ballard said.


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