Trial date set for WV woman who alleged mall kidnapping

HUNTINGTON — The first court hearing for a woman charged with making a false kidnapping claim in the Huntington Mall has been continued until November.

Santana Renee Adams, 24, of Milton, was scheduled to appear in Cabell County Magistrate Court Thursday morning on one misdemeanor charge of falsely reporting an emergency. She faces a $500 fine and up to a six-month jail sentence.

Her lawyers asked for a continuance and a bench trial was set for Nov. 15. Adams did not appear in court Thursday.

Adams was pushed into the spotlight April 1 after she told police she was shopping inside a clothing store at the mall when a man of Middle Eastern descent “attempted to grab her 5-year-old daughter by the hair and abduct her from the store.”

She said she then pulled a handgun from her pocket and pointed it at the man before he fled, according to a criminal complaint filed in Cabell County Magistrate Court.

However, as prosecutors reviewed the evidence, they found Adams’ followup statements to be inconsistent, and police said security video showed a different version of events.

After Adams’ allegedly false report was filed April 1, Mohamed Fathy Hussein Zayan, 54, of Alexandria, Egypt, was charged with felony attempted abduction by a person the same day, but the charge was dismissed days later.

Zayan, who was working in the state as a contracted engineer, previously told reporters he never interacted with Adams or her daughter and wouldn’t recognize them if he saw them.

He returned to Egypt after his charges were dropped.

Adams had been scheduled to appear in court in June, but the case was continued. She remains out of jail on a $20,000 bond.

Funerals for Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Ball, Sherman - 2 p.m., Spencer Chapel United Methodist Church.

Clay, Karen - Noon, Koontz Funeral Home, Hamlin.

Clonch, Daniel - 1 p.m., O'Dell Funeral Home, Montgomery.

Harvey, Joseph - 11 a.m., Donel C. Kinnard State Veterans Cemetery, Dunbar.

McClung, L. Bruce - Noon, Aldersgate United Methodist Church, Charleston.

Mills, Ambra - 1 p.m., Leonard Johnson Funeral Home, Marmet.

Pitsenbarger, Cindy - 7 p.m., Solid Rock Worship Center, Oak Hill.

Sowards, Teresa - 1 p.m., Keller Funeral Home, Dunbar.

Stilwell, Jason - 3 p.m., Strange Creek Cemetery, Strange Creek.

Vacheresse, Robert - 12:30 p.m., procession to leave Barlow Bonsall Funeral Home, Charleston.

Vaughan, Darlene - 10 a.m., Cross Lanes Baptist Church, Cross Lanes.