Iowa law defines the crime of child stealing in Iowa Code section 710.5 as the crime a person commits when, knowing that the person has no authority to do so, the person forcibly or fraudulently takes, decoys, or entices away any child with intent to detain or conceal such child from its parents or guardian, or other persons or institution having the lawful custody of such child, unless the person is a relative of such child, and the person’s sole purpose is to assume custody of such child.
Child stealing is a Class C felony in Iowa, which carries a 10 year prison sentence. A person who is convicted of child stealing in Iowa may also be required to register as a sex offender, depending upon the circumstances involved in the child stealing.
The related charge of kidnapping can also apply in some cases that might be viewed as child stealing in Iowa. The penalties for kidnapping in Iowa can be significantly more severe than child stealing.
Any person facing a child stealing charge in Iowa is well advised to seek an attorney at once, as it is important to handle the case properly.