UPDATE Suspect in North Carolina Amber Alert Charged With Felony Auto Theft and Theft of a Handgun – Bail Set at $50,000 Prior To Extradition
UPDATE; Monday, June 20, 3:00 p.m.
Chad Eastlack appeared in Missoula Justice Court Monday afternoon on a fugitive warrant out of North Carolina.
Eastlack had been charged with felony auto theft and theft of a firearm. He is being held on $50,000 bond pending extradition to North Carolina.
Eastlack asked for a lower bond amount so that he could care for his wife, who is mentally disabled, and who was in the courtroom on Monday afternoon.
On Sunday Morning, Missoula police responded to an Amber alert for 8-month-old John Eastlack who was being transported from North Carolina after being taken from social services by his non-custodial parents. The chances that the boy would be recovered in Montana may seem slim, but according to police Public Information Officer Travis Welsh, the details in the Amber Alert helped in the’ boys recovery.
“The info that they included was a description of a vehicle that they made be driving and also that they may be headed to either Great Falls or Missoula, Montana,” Welsh said. “We have a lot of information about this Amber alert which doesn’t always happen, but we had a vehicle description. So in this case officers were actually searching hotel parking lots looking for the vehicle that was described.”
One officer noticed the car and police apprehended Chad Eastlack and interviewed the child’s biological mother, but did not take her into custody. 8-month-old John Eastlack is now being taken care of by the state of Montana.
"The child was turned over to Child Protective Services here in Missoula,” Welsh said. “They in turn will coordinate with social serviced in the state of North Carolina to get the infant back to where he belongs. I’ll tell you the best thing that happened in all of this is that the little boy is recovered and is safe. Wherever he is safest, hopefully that’s where he’ll end up.”
So far, Chad Eastlack has just been arrested for charges from an outstanding warrant and has not been charged with kidnapping. The child’s biological mother has also not been charged with a crime and Missoula police say she cooperated with the investigation.