Woman Who Faked Pregnancy Killed Woman, Brought Infant to Dallas, Police Say

On Monday afternoon, Wichita, Kansas police released the identity of the woman they believe killed Laura Abarca, the mother of kidnapped infant Sophia Gonzalez. Dallas police rescued the girl from a house near the Dallas Zoo on Saturday.

Yesenia Sesmas, 34, recently moved to Dallas, said Wichita police Lt. Todd Ojile, after spending some time in Wichita. She'd faked a pregnancy over the last few months, police say. Last week, she drove to Wichita, shot Abarca and brought Gonzalez, then five days old, back to the house she lived in with her boyfriend, niece and teenage son.

After Abarca's husband discovered her body Thursday afternoon, police scrambled to find a suspect. By Friday night, Ojile said, they'd centered in on Sesmas. A Dallas Police SWAT unit swarmed Sesmas' house at 4:15 a.m. Saturday, rescuing Gonzalez and taking Sesmas, her boyfriend, niece and son into custody. Everyone but Sesmas has been released, Ojile said Monday, because Sesmas' family had nothing to do with the abduction.

“Late Saturday afternoon, Sesmas was booked into the Dallas County Jail on an outstanding felony warrant through Sedgwick County with first-degree murder and aggravated kidnapping charges pending,” Ojile said.

Sesmas remained in Dallas County Jail Monday, but she is expected to be extradited to Kansas this week, Ojile said.

Ojile offered precious few details as to Sesmas potential motive, beyond the fake pregnancy. The suspect and victim knew each other, he said, without adding much else.

"We are still going through that. As of right now, we believe that they have known each other for a few years," Ojile said, before declining to elaborate on how the suspect and the victim might have known each other.

Gonzalez is healthy and has been reunited with her family in Kansas, according to Wichita police. Saturday, she was taken to Children's Medical Center as a precaution, but was soon released.
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Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014. He's a Dallas native and a graduate of the University of North Texas.
Contact: Stephen Young