Stanislaus County Sheriff’s detectives are searching for a Modesto mother of two who was kidnapped at gunpoint by her estranged husband Sunday evening.
The suspect, Javier Chavez, 41, of south Modesto, may have fled to Mexico.
Detectives have been following up on leads and trying to locate Susana Torres, 32, of Modesto since her family reported her missing. Detectives learned that Chavez had abducted Torres and the two children at gunpoint outside of a market in the 600 block of Butte Avenue in south Modesto at approximately 5:30 p.m. Sunday.
Chavez dropped off the two- and eight-year-olds at his parent’s house around 10 p.m. Sunday. Chavez is the father of the younger child. When Chavez did not return to pick up the children on Monday, his parents took the 8-year-old to Torres’ parents’ house, and that is when it was discovered that she was missing.
Once authorities learned of the abduction, a search began. Detectives believe that Chavez fled to Mexico and had crossed the border by the time they learned of the kidnapping.
“We have been trying to trace back from the point of the kidnapping to when Chavez crossed the border to Mexico,” said Sheriff’s Detective Darwin Summerton. “We have followed up on several leads but still have not been able to locate Torres.”
At the time of the kidnapping, Torres had a restraining order against Chavez, and he was wanted by Modesto Police Department for rape. An arrest warrant has been issued for Chavez for kidnapping.
Detectives ask that anyone with information about this case or the whereabouts of Chavez or Torres to call Detective Summerton at (209) 525-7032 or Detective Esquivez (who speaks Spanish) at (209) 652-1792.
Information may be conveyed anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at (209) 521-4636. Tipsters can also submit tips at www.stancrimetips.org or use the mobile app "P3," and you may be eligible for a cash reward.