Amber Alert canceled for 4 West Lafayette children

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Azzura Ballard (left), Akira Ballard | Indiana State Police

SUN-TIMES MEDIA WIRE - Authorities in Indiana have canceled an Amber Alert issued late Friday for four children who were allegedly abducted by their mother from West Lafayette and believed to be in “extreme danger.”

The alert was issued about 10:50 p.m. Friday for Ahleiryah Ballard, a 1-year-old girl; Akira Ballard, a 3-year-old girl; Azzura Ballard, a 7-year-old girl; and Anthony Ballard Jr., an 8-year-old boy, according to the Indiana State Police. They were last seen on Thursday, and police thought they had been taken by their mother, 27-year-old Dominique Whorton.

Indiana State Police said the alert was canceled at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the request of West Lafayette police.

West Lafayette Police Capt. David VanVactor said the children were removed from their mother’s custody a few days ago by Child Protective Services and placed in the care of a family friend. However, he said the mother later took the children and left Indiana.

Police determined that Whorton was in Chicago with the children and made contact with her by phone, at which point she told police where she was, VanVactor said. Chicago Police then helped investigators verify that the kids were safe.

Chicago Police, Illinois State Police and Indiana State Police helped to transported Whorton and the children back to Indiana on Saturday, VanVactor said. The children were turned over to the custody of Child Protective Services.

VanVactor said that Whorton was not in police custody and no charges had been filed against her Saturday afternoon, but Child Protective Services and the Tippecanoe County prosecutor’s office may pursue charges in the future.