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Chief Magistrate Judge James Drane, left, speaks to defendant Alicia Omana, right, as her attorney Jeff Heller listens.

CANTON - Bond was denied Friday for a 34-year-old Woodstock woman accused of handcuffing her son and kidnapping him at knifepoint on Tuesday.

Alicia Omana appeared before Cherokee County Chief Magistrate Judge James Drane in a noon hearing at the county jail asking to be released on bond.

"I believe right now there is a direct threat to the child," Drane said in denying the request for bond.

Assistant District Attorney Ashley Snow argued Omana is a risk to flee, because she was arrested trying to flee the state with her 11-year-old son.

"She dragged the out of the house," Snow said, after he returned home from school and while his father was at work.

Snow said Omana is also a threat to try to influence witnesses in the case.

"She has already called her husband and asked him to drop the charges," Snow said. Both Omana's husband and her son want her to remain in jail, Snow said.

Omana's lawyer Jeff Heller said that she would stay in the area with friends as the case progresses and would agree to have no contact with her son if released on bond. He pointed out she has no prior criminal record and said she would show up for future proceedings in the case.

During the brief hearing, Omana sat trembling in an orange jumpsuit, listening to Drane and nodding when he asked if she understood the charges against her.

As Drane sat silently reading documents in Omana's case file, he glanced up and said to Snow, "Handcuffs?"

At one point, Omana said "There was no custody agreement with my husband. He (their son) was in my custody."

"A mother who would put handcuffs on a child - I have to call you on that one," Drane said, while acknowledging it was just an allegation.

Drane said that in addition to being a threat to her son, Omana might need some mental evaluation. He told her she could have another request for bond later.

"Mr. Heller is quite capable of getting you in front of a Superior Court judge to re-look at these issues," Drane said.

According the Cherokee Sheriff's Office:

At approximately 5 p.m. Tuesday afternoon Cherokee Sheriff’s deputies responded to a house on Jasmine Court in Woodstock after receiving a report that a mother had forcibly taken her 11-year-old son at knifepoint, handcuffed the child and was possibly leaving the state.

The child’s father arrived at the house and told deputies he had been in telephone contact with both his son and his wife and he was unable to convince her to return home. The father told deputies he thought his wife was going to Louisiana where she has family.

The boy’s father told deputies he was able to track a cell phone in his wife’s vehicle, so they were able to coordinate with law enforcement agencies south of Atlanta to search for the vehicle. It was spotted by the Grantville Police and pulled over on Interstate 85 south, just north of the city of LaGrange.

Managing Editor

Gary Tanner is managing editor of The Cherokee Tribune, Cherokee Ledger-News and Cherokee Life magazine. He has been working as a journalist since 1985.

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