5-week-old north Fla. boy found, alert canceled; friend had taken infant for Christmas photos



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In this Amber alert flyer made available by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement on Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014, shows a missing 5-week-old north Florida boy who has been missing from his Palatka, Fla. home. Demarion Hampton was last seen in the company of Charteria Pittman, 17. (AP Photo/Florida Department of Law Enforcement)


PALATKA, Florida — A missing 5-week-old north Florida boy was found unharmed Tuesday, and authorities canceled an Amber Alert that they issued when his mother told them she was worried after she let a friend take her son to have Christmas pictures taken.

Demarion Hampton was in good condition when authorities found him in Jacksonville, said James Griffith, Palatka's interim police chief. The boy's 18-year-old mother, Donshay Hampton, had allowed her friend Charteria Pittman to take Demarion to have Christmas photos taken, police said.

After the 17-year-old never returned and failed to answer her phone calls, Hampton became worried, she said. Hampton told WJXT-TV that Pittman is a close family friend.

"I've been trying to call her ... get in contact with her and see where my child was," Hampton said. "And she didn't reply back to me. She didn't call me back to let me know where he was at. So I don't know where he's at."

Pittman had reached out to her family after hearing of the Amber Alert on Tuesday, telling them she was concerned for her safety, Griffith said.

"She said she'd like to turn the child over and was willing to turn him over to her family, and they called and told us about it," Griffith said.

Police, aided by the FBI, Florida Department of Law Enforcement and other agencies, tracked Pittman's cellphone and social media use, and intercepted her and Demarion in Jacksonville, Griffith said. She was with three friends.

All four were being interviewed by authorities. Griffith said they are waiting to interview Pittman before deciding if any charges will be filed.

"We're just very thankful for the cooperation of family members on both sides of this," Griffith said.

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