|For Immediate Release
Case # 85CF01550
June 12, 2007
Susan Kang Schroeder
Public Affairs Counsel
MOTHER OF TWO ARRESTED FOR ABDUCTING HER DAUGHTERS AND HIDING THEM FOR 24 YEARS
*Arrested four years ago but disappeared after posting $25,000 bail
SPRING CITY, TENNESSEE – A mother of two who abducted her daughters and hid them from their father and law enforcement for 24 years has been arrested in Spring City, Tennessee. Patricia Toomey, 57, formerly of Laguna Beach, was arrested on June 8, 2007 by Middle Tennessee US Marshall’s Fugitive Task Force (a multi-agency task force designed to apprehend fugitives). Toomey is charged with two counts of child abduction and faces a maximum of three years eight months in prison. She is being held in Rhea County Jail without bond pending a June 15, 2007 arraignment on the fugitive warrant.
In 1983, Dale Hirsch, now 57, was living in Alaska. Hirsch had the right to reasonable visitation of his daughters, Heather, then 10, and Paris, then 3, by visiting them in California. Toomey is accused of avoiding Hirsch and denying access to their children. In October 1983, Toomey is accused of abducting the girls and disappearing. The last time Hirsch saw the children was January, 1983.
In 2003, Toomey was arrested on the charges in Lee County, Virginia. After posting $25,000 bail, she disappeared again. At the time of her re-arrest last week, Toomey was living in Spring City, Tennessee, under the name “Patricia McNeil.” She was arrested at the home of her mother, Violet Toomey.
Hirsch received a phone call and some e-mails from his older daughter, Heather, around the time of Toomey’s 2003 arrest. The e-mail correspondence continued sporadically until April 2005. He has had no other contact with his daughters since their 1983 disappearance.
Deputy District Attorney Jim Bacin of the Family Protection Unit is prosecuting this case.