Colorado mom guilty of Qanon kidnapping conspiracy

Aug 26, 2022, 1:51 AM | Updated: 1:52 pm
FILE - This undated booking photo provided by the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, in Colorado, sho...

FILE - This undated booking photo provided by the Douglas County Sheriff's Office, in Colorado, shows Cynthia Abcug. The Colorado mother accused of plotting to kidnap her son from foster care after her teen daughter said she started associating with supporters of the QAnon conspiracy theory was found guilty of conspiracy to commit second-degree kidnapping on Friday, Aug. 26, 2022. (Douglas County Sheriff's Office via AP, File)

(Douglas County Sheriff's Office via AP, File)

DENVER (AP) — A Colorado mother accused of plotting to kidnap her son from foster care after her teen daughter said she started associating with supporters of the QAnon conspiracy theory was found guilty of conspiracy to commit second-degree kidnapping on Friday.

Cynthia Abcug, 53, denied she was involved in planning a raid on the foster home where her then 7-year-old son lived in the fall of 2019. She had lost custody of him earlier that year after being accused of medical child abuse — lying about him having seizures and other health problems in order to trick doctors into providing unnecessary care.

Jurors also found Abcug guilty of a misdemeanor count of child abuse. She is scheduled to be sentenced in October.

Her son, now 10, is still in foster care and has not had serious health problems since being removed from Abcug, according to prosecutors.

Abcug’s lawyers suggested that a drug prescribed to treat the seizures was responsible for at least some of the boy’s health problems. Doctors had begun weaning him from the medication before he was removed from Abcug’s custody.

Abcug moved her family to Colorado in the fall of 2017 at the suggestion of a doctor in Florida in hopes that neurologists at Children’s Hospital Colorado could find out what the cause of his health problems were.

Abcug testified that after her son was removed in May 2019 she was extremely anxious and reached out on social media for help getting her son back. She told jurors she ended up meeting members of a group that said it was working on reforming the family court system and offered to help her get her son back legally. She said it turned out to be a scam with members interested in stealing money raised online to help parents who had lost custody of their children.

She did not describe the group as being involved with QAnon but said she heard references to the conspiracy theory by people she met through her activism online.

Many QAnon supporters believe former President Donald Trump was fighting enemies in the so-called deep state to expose a group of satanic, cannibalistic child molesters they believe secretly runs the globe.

Around this time, Abcug posted on social media that social workers took children to sell them and sent them to other countries for adoption.

The conspiracy theory was not a main issue in the trial, which focused more on detailed testimony from medical providers and educators about Abcug’s medical history.

Abcug said she heard references to QAnon in passing in talking to people she met online. Rubber bracelets with a phrase used by QAnon supporters, Storm Is Upon Us, as well as a website known for posts about QAnon printed on them were found in Abcug’s home, according to police.

Abcug’s daughter, who was 16 at the time, told authorities she was concerned because her mother had been talking about a raid on the foster home for several months and that she believed people were going to be hurt because those involved believed her brother was wrongfully taken from his home, according to Abcug’s arrest affidavit. Her daughter also told them her mother had allowed a military veteran she believed to be armed to sleep on their couch to provide security, it said.

Abcug said the group she was working with arranged to send the man to protect her after the lock of her back sliding door was found broken. He has been been identified by police but has not been charged. In response to a question from the jury, she acknowledged she had never met him before she allowed him to stay with her.

Abcug said she bought a gun around this time because she feared for her safety but never made it to an appointment for a training class and has never fired it. Police found the appointment listed on the house’s whiteboard calendar when Abcug’s daughter was also removed from the home after reporting her concerns.

After her daughter was removed, Abcug said the man providing security coordinated with others to take her to a “safe house” and implied that she was held against her will. Abcug said her phone was taken from her and she was held for three months in a hotel.

Abcug was arrested in Montana on Dec. 30, 2019.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - An Afghan refugee boy carries a bag of mangoes on his shoulder in Karachi, Pakistan, Sunday,...
Associated Press

Amnesty: Creditors should provide debt relief to Sri Lanka

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — International creditors should provide debt relief to Sri Lanka to alleviate suffering as its people endure hunger, worsening poverty and shortages of basic supplies, Amnesty International said in a statement Wednesday. For months, Sri Lanka has been in the grip of a dire economic crisis and the country has defaulted […]
1 day ago
FILE - The logo of the Organization of the Petroleoum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is seen outside of...
Associated Press

OPEC+ weighs large oil cutback to boost sagging prices

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The OPEC+ alliance of oil-exporting countries on Wednesday will debate a potentially large cut in the amount of crude it ships to the global economy — a move that could help Russia weather a looming European ban on oil imports and raise gasoline prices for U.S. drivers just ahead of national […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Pakistan’s army chief meets with US defense secretary

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan’s powerful military chief met Wednesday in Washington with U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and other security and government officials, the military said. Qamar Javed Bajwa’s trip to the United States comes weeks before he’s expected to retire after an extended six-year tenure. Although Pakistan has been ruled by the elected civilian […]
1 day ago
A malnourished child sits at a clinic in Dollow, Somalia, on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022. Within week...
Associated Press

EXPLAINER: A look at famine and its toll as Somalia at risk

DOLLOW, Somalia (AP) — Within weeks, a famine could be declared in Somalia, affecting more than 850,000 people in two of the country’s worst drought-affected areas plus thousands of people in displacement camps. Such a declaration by the United Nations and partners is rare and a sign of the dire consequences from the worst drought […]
1 day ago
A woman holds a child at a clinic in Dollow, Somalia, on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022.  Somalia is in ...
Associated Press

‘So many children dying’: Somalia drought brings famine near

DOLLOW, Somalia (AP) — A man in a donkey cart comes wheeling through the dust, carrying two small, silent boys. The sky is overcast. It could rain. It won’t. It hasn’t for a very long time. Mohamed Ahmed Diriye is 60 years old, and he’s completing the grimmest journey of his life. He set off […]
1 day ago
Britain's Prime Minister Liz Truss, foreground and Chancellor of the Exchequer Kwasi Kwarteng look ...
Associated Press

UK’s Truss tries to shake off dismal start with party speech

BIRMINGHAM, England (AP) — British Prime Minister Liz Truss will say Wednesday that all change brings disruption as she tries to convince her Conservative Party — and the country — that the turmoil unleashed by her tax-cutting economic agenda will bring more prosperity in the end. Truss is due to close a tumultuous Conservative conference […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
...

Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!
...

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]
Colorado mom guilty of Qanon kidnapping conspiracy