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Tujunga woman may have been kidnapped by son, police say

May 5, 2012 |  8:16 pm

Margarita StephensA 52-year-old woman may have been kidnapped from her Tujunga home by her son, who has a history of mental illness and making threats on his mother, police said.

Family and friends of Margarita Stephens reported her missing Friday after not seeing or hearing from her for three days, according to a statement from the Los Angeles Police Department.

Stephens had also missed work and her cellphone, which she normally answers, was going straight to voice mail, police said.

Officers were sent to her home in the 10200 block of Samoa Avenue, but they did not find her or her car. 

Investigators suspect her son, 28-year-old Jose Perez, may have kidnapped her. 

Perez was recently released from a mental facility and convicted on charges of making threats against his mother, authorities said.Jose Perez

Investigators say a locator on Stephens' phone showed that about 9 p.m. on Thursday, she may have been traveling in or near Angeles Crest Highway in La Crescenta.

Police are searching for her silver 2009 four-door Toyota Corolla, with California license plate 6HDR215.

Stephens is Puerto Rican. She's 5 feet 7 and weighs 160 pounds. She has black hair, brown eyes and medium complexion, police said. She has a tattoo of a bracelet on her right ankle.

Perez weighs 210 pounds, is 6 foot and has black hair and brown eyes.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Foothill Community Police Station at (818) 756-8861 or a tip line at (800) 222-8477.


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 Photo: Top left, Margarita Stephens; bottom right, Tony Perez.  Credit: LAPD