Marianne Merritt, a 40-year-old mother from Lima, Ohio, has reportedly kidnapped her four children in the early hours of Tuesday morning with the assistance of her boyfriend, Charles Perkins, who is believed to be armed and dangerous. Police state that he has previously been accused of abusing Merritt's young children.
The children, 8-year-old Damien Wilson, 9-year-old Patience Wilson, 12-year-old Benjamin Karl-Leland Croley, and 13-year-old Damara Croley, are thought to be traveling with the couple in a dark blue 2000 Chrysler Voyager with a white passenger door, carrying an Ohio plate number FMQ3175. The children were taken around 1:30 a.m.
Police have issued a multi-state alert for the children, as they believe Merritt is headed toward Florida with them. According to WLWT, 39-year-old Perkins has active warrants against him at the moment.
Merritt has no custodial rights to her two sons and two daughters.
Authorities have requested the assistance of residents in all states between Ohio and Florida to be on the lookout for the four children.
Merritt is described as a white woman standing at 5 feet 5 inches in height, weighing 210 pounds, with red hair and green eyes. Perkins is a white man, the same height as Merritt, weighing 164 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes.
Her teenage daughter Damara is 5-foot-3, approximately 180 pounds, with light brown hair and blue eyes. Police say she was last seen wearing a red OSU shirt with a pair of Spiderman web pants.
Benjamin Karl-Leland is a 12-year-old white male standing at 5-foot-1, weighing around 120 pounds with blonde hair and blue eyes. His last known clothing is a pair of yellow smiley emoji pants.
Patience Wilson is a 9-year-old white female at 4 feet 5 inches in height, weighing 80 pounds, with blonde hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing a white top and a pair of either dark blue or black leggings.
Damien Wilson is an 8-year-old white male. He is 4-foot-5, weighing 111 pounds, with blonde hair and blue eyes. He was last seen wearing a blue shirt and a pair of red and black shorts.
The police have issued an endangered missing child advisory regarding the kidnapping. The criteria to issue an Amber Alert have not be met in the state of Ohio as yet, according to the Lima Police Department. Anyone who might have information regarding the alleged kidnapping or the whereabouts of the four children should immediately contact the police at 419-227-4444.