Woman accused of taking granddaughter speaks from jail

Jailhouse interview Grandmother accused of kidnapping claims innocence

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) – A woman accused of kidnapping her granddaughter told WAVY.com those claims couldn’t be further from the truth.

Chesapeake police arrested 60-year-old Terry Denise Omeni Sunday morning after getting a call from Missouri about a missing child. But Omeni, who’s now in jail, told WAVY.com on Wednesday that she’s the one who called detectives and told them where she was.

“I don’t wanna be no full-time grandma,” Omeni said. “I’m not interested in being a full-time grandma. I like being a grandma who comes to visit and leaves. My daughter told me I was on Facebook. I was on all kinds of media. I’m like, ‘what for?’”

Terry Omeni is accused of not returning her 4-year-old granddaughter to the child's mother at the agreed upon time, according to police. (Photo provided by police)
Terry Omeni is accused of not returning her 4-year-old granddaughter to the child’s mother at the agreed upon time, according to police. (Photo provided by police)

Her granddaughter’s mother contacted police, concerned that Omeni had taken her 4-year-old with no plans to return. Omeni said she picked up her granddaughter in Missouri at the end of June to give the girl’s mother a break. She brought her back home to New Jersey, and the plan was for her to return the child shortly after July 21 when a family reunion was planned to take place in Suffolk.

Well, the reunion never happened, and before she could get her granddaughter back to her mother, Omeni said an unpaid bill changed everything.

“Last week, I left from New Jersey to come down,” Omeni said. “My phone went off Thursday night at midnight because I didn’t pay my phone bill.”

The girl’s mother was trying to call. And since she couldn’t contact Omeni, she made contact with police reporting a missing child instead. Once Omeni heard police were looking for her, she said she called for a detective to clear things up.

“She said, ‘he’ll get back to you.’ He never got back to me,” Omeni said. Only people who got back to me were the Chesapeake Police Department. To this day, I’m still trying to figure out what the heck happened and why she did this.”

Officers found Omeni and her granddaughter at the Value Inn at 1708 Sentinel Drive, exactly where she told them they were staying. She was arrested on an outstanding fraud warrant out of Delaware, which she said is for a missed court date on a bad check.

Now she faces charges for interference with custody, connected to this case. The child was taken away and put into protective custody.

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