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Pregnant attorney says she made up abduction

A pregnant Ohio attorney who told police she was kidnapped at gunpoint after she disappeared for several days has recanted her story, Toledo police said Tuesday.
Judge C. Allen McConnell takes a moment to compose himself while talking to the media Tuesday in Toledo, Ohio, about his daughter Karyn McConnell Hancock. She is the pregnant Toledo lawyer who police say fabricated a story that she was kidnapped. Madalyn Ruggiero / AP
/ Source: The Associated Press

A pregnant attorney who vanished for four days last week now says her tale of being kidnapped at gunpoint and taken to Georgia was fabricated, police said Tuesday. Her husband said she had “a meltdown.”

Karyn McConnell Hancock, a former Toledo city councilwoman, had disappeared Wednesday and was found Saturday near Atlanta. Her husband said Monday that his 35-year-old wife, six months pregnant with her second child, claimed she was kidnapped by two men and a woman.

Police said at a news conference that she recanted Monday after eight hours of questioning. Hancock will likely be charged with making a false police report, said Police Chief Mike Navarre.

Police would not discuss a motive, but Hancock’s husband, Lawrence Hancock, said his wife has been having psychological problems for several years.

“She experienced a meltdown and attempted to handle those matters without the assistance of professional help or others. Karyn elected to leave everything because she felt that she was unable to continue,” he said.

Hancock’s father, C. Allen McConnell, is a Toledo Municipal Court judge, and her husband is bishop of Final Harvest Church in Toledo. The husband had said earlier that he believed the purported kidnapping had something to do with a case McConnell handled before he was a judge.

He had said his wife called him from a restaurant pay phone Thursday afternoon, saying “they have me.” She said she thought she was going to die and “told me don’t let her son forget her and that she loved me,” he said.

Investigators don’t think her husband or anyone else knew what she was doing, authorities said Tuesday.

Hancock was found after she flagged down a motorist near at Six Flags in Austell, Ga., and the motorist called police, authorities had said. Her car was found nearby.

One of the attorney’s former clients recently filed a lawsuit against her, accusing her of taking money from him that he was owed from an accident settlement. In the suit, Maurice Morris, of Toledo, said Hancock negotiated a settlement but never gave him the $10,000 settlement.

Lawrence Hancock said he wasn’t sure if the lawsuit triggered her actions.

Both he and his father-in-law, McConnell, had appeared on NBC’s “Today” show Monday to discuss the case. At the time, the judge said the family needed more time to find out “what went on, what went wrong and what happened with her.”