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Documents: Dad Stocked Sailboat Before Kidnapping

By: Associated Press; CNN; Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office Email
By: Associated Press; CNN; Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office Email

Associated Press Release

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Court documents show that the man accused of kidnapping his two young sons and sailing to Cuba had spent weeks loading the family's boat with supplies.

The affidavit's release coincided with a hearing Friday for Joshua and Sharyn Hakken in Tampa, though the couple did not attend. They were ordered to remain in jail without bond, which their public defender did not contest.

The affidavit says an unidentified witness told a Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office detective she had sold Joshua Hakken a boat for $3,500 in January.

The witness said Hakken would visit the boat once a week and load boxes of supplies into the cabin. On the day the family disappeared, the Hakkens told the slip owner they were heading to Key West and possibly South America.


Associated Press Release

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- The couple accused of kidnapping their boys and sailing with them to Cuba to elude authorities are staying in jail.

On Friday, Joshua and Sharyn Hakken's (HAY'-ken) public defender didn't contest a request by prosecutors in Tampa that they remain in jail without bond.

The Hakkens didn't appear at the hearing.

The pretrial detention hearing had been scheduled to determine whether they would be released until their trial on charges of kidnapping and interfering with custody.

Police say the Hakkens lost custody of their boys, ages 4 and 2, after authorities found them in a Louisiana hotel room with drugs and weapons.

Last week, the boys' maternal grandparents were granted custody. That's when police say Joshua Hakken broke into the home, tied up his mother-in-law, took the children and eventually set sail for Cuba.


Associated Press Release

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- The couple accused of kidnapping their two young sons and fleeing by boat to Cuba has been booked into a Florida jail after being handed over to U.S. authorities.

According to a website for the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, Joshua Michael Hakken and his wife Sharyn are being held at the jail early Wednesday on a number of charges including kidnapping, child neglect and interference with custody.

Authorities say Joshua Michael Hakken kidnapped his sons, 4-year-old Cole and 2-year-old Chase, from his mother-in-law's house north of Tampa. The boys' maternal grandparents had been granted permanent custody of the boys last week.

Earlier Tuesday, Foreign Ministry official Johana Tablada said in a statement that Cuba had informed U.S. authorities of the country's decision to turn over the couple and their children.


Associated Press Release

HAVANA (AP) -- Cuba says it will turn over to the United States a Florida couple who allegedly kidnapped their own children from the mother's parents and fled by boat to Havana.

Foreign Ministry official Johana Tablada told The Associated Press in a written statement that Cuba had informed U.S. authorities of the country's decision to turn over Joshua Michael Hakken, his wife Sharyn and their two young boys. She did not say when the handover would occur.

The Hakkens were spotted alongside their boat, Salty, docked at Havana's Hemingway Marina. Joshua Michael Hakken told reporters to stay away but the family appeared to be interacting normally with each other.

Associated Press Alert

HAVANA (AP) -- Cuba says it will turn over to US the Florida parents that allegedly fled with kidnapped children.


Associated Press Release

By CHRISTINE ARMARIO

MIAMI (AP) -- The Florida couple suspected of taking their two sons and fleeing to Cuba may have thought they could find a refuge from U.S. authorities on the communist island. But with criminal charges pending and little for Cuba to gain politically by holding them, experts say they are unlikely to stay for long.

Authorities say Joshua Michael Hakken kidnapped his sons, 4-year-old Cole and 2-year-old Chase, from his mother-in-law's house and took the children and his wife to Cuba.

The boys' maternal grandparents had been granted permanent custody.

There is no extradition agreement between the U.S. and Cuba, nor is Cuba a signatory of the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

That means it will be up to Cuban authorities on whether to return to them.


CNN Web Copy

Havana, Cuba (CNN) -- [Breaking news update at 11:42 a.m. Tuesday ]

A man on a boat at a Havana marina told CNN's Patrick Oppmann he is Josh Hakken, the U.S. man accused of kidnapping his sons and sailing them to Cuba.

He declined to answer questions, and Cuban security asked a CNN reporter to leave.

The man, who fit Hakken's description, was with a woman who fits the description of his wife. Both were aboard a blue sailboat named "Salty." The CNN reporter also saw one child on the boat.

Hakken, a Louisiana man who lost custody of his two young sons, is accused of abducting them, together with his wife, according to a Florida sheriff's department.


Associated Press Release

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Officials believe a Florida couple suspected of kidnapping their two sons from the woman's parents are in Cuba.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office reports that it received information Monday that the Hakken family had arrived on the island nation. Investigators say they're working with the FBI and the U.S. State Department to verify their reports.

Authorities say Joshua Michael Hakken entered his mother-in-law's house north of Tampa early Wednesday, tied her up and fled with his young sons.

Authorities had been searching by air and sea for a boat Hakken recently bought. The truck the family had been traveling in was found late Thursday, abandoned in a parking garage in Madeira Beach.

The boys had been living since last year with their maternal grandparents, who were granted permanent custody Tuesday.

Authorities have previously characterized the Hakkens as "anti-government."


Associated Press Release

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Florida authorities hope good weather will boost their chances of tracking down a sailboat that may be carrying two boys kidnapped from their grandparents' home.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office says Joshua Michael Hakken entered his mother-in-law's house Wednesday, tied her up and fled with his sons Cole and Chase.

Authorities are searching for a boat Hakken recently bought. It's described as having a blue Bimini top, white mainsail, and a blue hull with the word "Salty" and a paw print in white on both sides, with a white stripe near the water line.

Sheriff's office spokesman Larry McKinnon tells The Tampa Tribune (http://bit.ly/12xyjhY) that good weather means more recreational and boaters will be on the water and able to help in the search.


WTSP-CBS Web Copy

Tampa, Florida -- Hillsborough deputies say the father who abducted his two non-custodial children in Tampa was last seen taking his family into the Gulf of Mexico aboard a sailboat.

The information comes shortly after Joshua Hakken's pickup truck was discovered in a Madeira Beach parking garage. Investigators believe Hakken took 4-year-old Cole and 2-year-old Chase onto a 25-foot sailboat, hours after abducting them from their grandmother's home early on Wednesday morning.

The Sheriff's Office says it is not clear what direction the boat went after leaving the Johns Pass area, nor do they know if the boat was still on the water during Thursday's stormy weather.

The boat's description is as follows:

• 1972 Morgan 25M (25 foot) sailboat
• blue bimini top, white mainsail, boat deck and cabin are white
• hull is blue with "Salty" and a paw print in white on both sides with a white stripe near water line
• Florida Boat Registration #FL3717BK, HUL #M252099
• Possibly a yellow horseshoe life preserver on deck

Deputies say Joshua Hakken took his kids just one day after he and his wife lost custody.
"He entered the residence, where he tied up the grandmother and then removed the children," said Corporal Kevin Bodie, a case detective with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.
It happened in what neighbors describe as a quiet neighborhood just as parents were taking their children to school.
"My heart breaks, my heart beaks for everybody in the family, but particularly for those two little boys," said Carla Bolling, who saw all the activity around the grandmother's home on Shady Shores Drive in Tampa.
Hakken's wife Sharyn is also believed to be accompanying them. Investigators are not sure if she was part of the kidnapping plot or a victim.
"We do feel that they are in danger due to the nature, the means where they were taken," said Corporal Bodie.
A warrant is out for Joshua Hakken's arrest on two counts of kidnapping, two counts of child neglect, two counts of false imprisonment, one count of burglary with batter, and one count of grand theft auto.

The children were originally removed from Hakken's custody last year in Louisiana following multiple drug charges. While in foster care, Joshua Hakken allegedly showed up at the foster care facility waving a gun and began beating on the front door. He fled the scene without his children after he was unable to enter the secured facility.
Anyone with any information regarding the location of these children are asked to immediately dial 9-1-1 or call the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office at 813-247-8200. Both parents are considered armed and dangerous.


Associated Press Release

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- The 2006 GMC pickup truck owned by the father of two boys kidnapped from their grandparents' house has been found abandoned in a Madeira Beach parking garage.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office says detectives are processing the vehicle, found late Thursday. They're searching for clues to help them find 4-year-old Cole Hakken and his 2-year-old brother Chase. They were taken by their father, 35-year-old Joshua Michael Hakken, who tied up their grandmother.

Authorities in several states are searching for the boys, as tips have poured in. Authorities say Hakken and the children's mother, 34-year-old Sharyn Patricia Hakken, are prime suspects.

Joshua Hakken lost custody of his children last year after a drug possession arrest in Louisiana. Authorities say he later tried to take them from a foster home at gunpoint.


Press Release: AMBER Alert Website

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation is issuing a statewide AMBER Alert for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for four year old Cole Hakken and two year old Chase Hakken.

The children were kidnapped from their custodial maternal grandmother in Tampa, Florida on April 3, 2013. They are possibly with their biological parents, Sharyn and Joshua Hakken. The parents are believed to be armed and dangerous and may be traveling in a 2006, black GMC Sierra, Florida license number U95KT. The vehicle may have been seen in the area of Highway 30 and Highway 411 in Etowah, Tennessee last night around 8 p.m. EST.

If you have seen this vehicle or the children, you are urged to call the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation at 1-800-TBI-FIND or the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office at 813-247-8200.


Press Release: Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office

On April 3, 2013 at 6:30 a.m., Joshua Hakken entered the residence at 14040 Shady Shores Drive belonging to Patricia Hauser, maternal grandmother of the children. Joshua tied up Patricia, removed the children and fled in Patricia's 2009 Silver Toyota Camry. The children could possibly be in a Black 2006 GMC Pickup registered to Joshua Hakken. Both suspects are anti-government and have attempted a previous abduction at gun point in Louisiana.

Anyone with any information regarding the location of these children are asked to immediately dial 9-1-1 or call the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office at 247-8200. Both subjects are considered armed and dangerous.


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