Pirate Prospect’s Wife Held for Kidnapping

 

 
 

 

UPDATE: ( 6:41 pm)

Pittsburgh Pirate prospect Jose Tabata spoke for the first time to reporters late this afternoon and told them that his wife had told him recently that she was pregnant. Tabata told the St. Petersburg Times through a translator: ” The truth is that my wife had told me many lies that, until this whole situation began, I did not know.  One that hurt me alot was her history as a criminal, that she has spent years in prison, that she had robbed and committed fraud.  But the worst lie was that she completely falsified her pregnancy, and the eventual birth of the baby girl, which would have made me a father for the first time. Imagine how that makes me fell.”



A Pittsburgh Pirate prospect wife has been charged with abducting a 2-year old baby from his parents earlier this week.  As Hillsborough County authorities continue to search for answers as to why a baseball player’s wife allegedly abducted a 2-month-old baby that turned up in Manatee, sheriff’s officials here have begun wrapping up their role in the investigation. Pittsburgh Pirates prospect Jose Tabata is not involved in any wrongdoing in a bizarre case in which his much-older wife is charged with abducting a 2-month-old baby girl from a Florida couple, police told the team. Tabata, a 20-year-old outfielder who is one of the Pirates’ top minor leaguers, said in a statement Wednesday that he is “hurt, frustrated, and confused” that his 43-year-old wife, Amalia Tabata Pereira, is accused of taking the girl from a woman at a health clinic in Plant City, east of Tampa, on Monday night.

 
 

The infant, Sandra Cruz-Francisco, was taken from her mother, Rosa Sirilo-Francisco, about 3 p.m. Monday by a woman her family only knew as “Janet,” according to police in Plant City, about 60 miles from Bradenton. The mother had taken her baby for a checkup at the Plant City Health Department, where she met Janet, who said she was an immigration official. The woman told Sirilo-Francisco there were officers at her home waiting to deport her and the child’s father to Mexico. She was arrested after handing over the girl to authorities in a Bradenton shopping center parking lot, less than 24 hours after the infant was taken.  After an Amber Alert was issued, Manatee sheriff’s deputies got an anonymous 911 call, then found her with the girl in the parking lot of a strip mall off 60th Avenue West in Bradenton, near Manatee Community College.

 
                                         
 

She was arrested on a false imprisonment warrant out of Hillsborough, then taken to the Manatee County jail. According to jail records, she has also been arrested on charges of impersonating a public officer and interference with custody. Authorities have not announced if the baby’s parents are U.S. citizens, but they say Tabata is originally from Puerto Rico and is an American citizen. Her husband is from Venezuela and is here on a visa,  according to a Manatee county sheriff official. The two met in Tampa when Jose Tabata was a minor league player in the New York Yankees organization.They married in January 2008 when he was age 19 and she was age 41, at an Amscot in the city of Tampa.
 
 

According to her arrest report, the couple lives in an apartment in the 3400 block of 59th Avenue West, near where the baby was found. The report also lists a Tampa area telephone number. It was disconnected Thursday. In 2003, Tabata was released from prison after serving more than two years for arson and theft, according to information from the Department of Corrections. In September 1999 she staged a robbery at Paycheck Advance, the loan company where she worked in Temple Terrace, said Temple Terrace Police Department spokesman Mike Dunn. He said Tabata acted as a lookout while an accomplice, Sammy Bush, set files on fire. When an officer arrived, she gestured as if someone was holding a gun to her head. No suspect was located. She pretended to be a crime victim for months, then eventually broke down and admitted to stealing $20,000 from her employer by creating dummy accounts and by selling cars without the owners’ consent.

 
 

Tabata was considered one of the New York Yankees’ top prospects last year, only to walk out of a game involving their Double-A Trenton farm club early last season. Tabata apparently was frustrated by his slow start. The incident partly led to the Yankees including Tabata in the July trade in which the Pirates dealt outfielder Xavier Nady and left-hander Damaso Marte to New York for Tabata and right-handers Ross Ohlendorf, Jeff Karstens and Daniel McCutchen. After the trade, Tabata hit .348 in 22 games with Altoona – or 100 points higher than he hit in 79 games for Trenton – and had three homers and 13 RBIs in 89 at-bats. Tabata, a native of Venezuela, also impressed the Pirates this spring with his line-drive power, throwing arm and ability to learn quickly.
 
 

Upon making the trade, the Pirates apparently were unaware that Tabata was married to a woman more than twice his age who, according to the St. Petersburg Times, spent more than two years in a state prison about 10 years ago for an arson case. Family members told the newspaper that Pereira, a native of Puerto Rico, has four children of her own, all of them teenagers or older. The woman apparently has used at least four names in the past, and the name given to police does not match the one – Mayita – in the Pirates’ media guide.

 
 
Photo credits:    1) www.pirates.com
                        &nb
sp;  2) www.hcsd.com

 

22 Comments

This story frightens me. Why are there people like this in the world? And why would a professional baseball player marry a convicted felon twice his age? I don’t understand. I guess he would say it was love and I can only believe him because no other explanation makes sense.
Melissa
http://clemsongirlbaseball.mlblogs.com

I remember right after I was drafted I was to attend a mandatory NFL Security meeting where they discussed this type of con artist. I hate to call her that, but there is a pattern here that puts doubt in your mind.
He is from another country, you never know what she might have told him, or made him believe.
It is a pity that he could not have seen this coming, but sometimes people are so slick they get through the cracks.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

I’ve heard of this happening before. I’m glad the baby is back where she belongs. I hope that Tabata takes a good long look at his wife. I don’t believe the age difference is the problem, but her mental state.
Canuck
http://watercooler.mlblogs.com

You never know what goes through a person’s mind, but we also do not know what she might have even told him about her past.
I am just glad he did not have anything to do with it. He is a really good prospect that the Pirates got in the Nady trade last year. He should be in the majors in the next two years, if not this September.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Oh my God Rays – that there are people like this in the world is terrifying! I can’t help but wonder if you are right and this poor kid has been conned by this woman Her age isn’t really the issue – her mental status is. I’m glad the baby is home safe and I hope that Tabata gets some help – he is going to need it to process all that has happened After all – he is really just a kid himself. I think I’ll give my boys an extra hug today – whether they want it or not.

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

I know the Pirates clubhouse is supportive of him in this situation, and he has been told he can remain off the field until he feels secure and willing to continue.
People make bad choices sometimes in their other halves. Hopefully he can rebound from this with grace, character and a bit of class.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Awful story, but at least there’s a happy ending with the baby back home safely. Sure glad the Yankees traded this guy and his “baggage.” We have enough drama already.

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

When I first saw this in the newspaper, I wondered if there had been a misprint in the ages. It makes me wonder how well he knew her before they were married. I’m glad the baby is safe, and I hope things end up working out for Tabata.
Sue
Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

Could you imagine him still being a part of the Yankees this year and have this hit the airwaves too.
I am glad that the guy has some distance from her now so he can sort out the damage and get a good attorney to start some divorce proceedings before he goes north this Summer.
He is a good player, but young ( 20), so I will cut him some slack right now.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

To give her a bit of credit, she is not ugly, but I would have balked at 4 kids if I was 20 years old.
But, they say that love is blind, hopefully she did not take him for any huge amounts of cash or anything else.
A rumor flying out there is that she might have “played” pregnant, and got the baby to make the whole thing legit.
I hope that ends up just being idle gossip.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Glad the baby is ok…scary. And this poor, obviously naive guy is going to need some serious counseling after this. More proof that my theory about every team needing a Life Coach holds water :)

Jenn
http://philliesphollowers.mlblogs.com/

One word, two syllables, lots of shaking when I say: “CREEPY”.
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

oh :/
and thanks for commenting my Blog :)
Love,
Sarah

http://www.sarahjacqueline.mlblogs.com

Hey Rays – Congrats you’re #8 on the latest Leader’s List!

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

Oh man that’s crazy! =( I can’t believe that his wife did that. I can’t believe his wife is 20 plus years older than him.

~ King of Cali
http://kingofcali.mlblogs.com/

I agree with you Jenn,
Not only a life coach, but you would have thought some one with MLB security or maybe a team official might of questioned her by now.
I know the NFL did background checks on us and our relatives as a precaution.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

actually you are #7 on the readers list! I guess Mark updated it after Julia looked! Congrats!!!
Canuck
http://watercooler.mlblogs.com

I agree with you Jeff,
I am sorry when I was 20 and in college, a 40-year old would not turn my head.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Not a problem Sarah,
Looking forward to see how the casting call does this weekend for you.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

I have not even seen the list yet.
I am still shell-shocked from James Shields giving up 11 ryns on 12 hits today………
It was a murder in the first degree.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

I have to be funny here for a second, that is going to give MILF’s around the world a bad name.
The best part of it all is how fast the states Amber Alert system worked, and that the baby was with the mother again that night.
So the system does work.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

Wow,
I move up just by being me………………Thanks for the update.
If it was not for people like you reading and viewing my blog, I would not even be up there at all………..So thank you everyone.

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

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