PLAINFIELD, Ind. (WXIN) -- A Virginia mother on the run for months with her four children has been arrested in Indiana.
Investigators took Melody Bannister into custody early Wednesday morning in Plainfield. Bannister has been the subject of a nationwide search by U.S. Marshals. She was booked on a warrant out of Stafford County, Virginia, according to the Hendricks County Sheriff’s Office.
Sources said Bannister was found around 2:30 a.m. at a Speedway gas station on Perry Road. Her four children were found with her in her vehicle and are in DCS custody. The children are 13, 12, 11 and 7 years old
In June Bannister informed the Stafford County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO) in Virginia that her children were being abused. Police conducted a joint investigation with child protective services and determined that the allegations were unfounded. Then Bannister left for vacation to Alabama with the four kids, alleging she was saving them from sex trafficking by their father and grandfather. In July, a Virginia court cleared the men of those allegations and granted the father custody, but she disappeared with the kids.
She was wanted on a felony charge of violation of a court order, four misdemeanor abduction charges and a misdemeanor count of filing a false police report. She's now facing charges for parental kidnapping of a minor and abduction by parent.