Savanna Todd was kidnapped by her mother Lee Barnett in 1994. At the time, Savanna’s father, Harris Todd, had full custody of his 10-month-old daughter. For 20 years, Lee Barnett – who changed her name to Alex Geldenhuys and changed Savanna’s name to Samantha Geldenhuys – eluded the FBI by continually traveling across the world. In 2011, Barnett was found in Australia and deported to the US, where she was sentenced to 21 months in jail.
Samantha continues to stand by her mother and calls her a role model. While her mother was in prison, Samantha wrote on Facebook on the day of her mother’s birthday: “Everything that I have achieved and everything that I will continue to strive for is thanks to the one and only person that has never left my side. My entire upbringing, I have seen my mom put others before her, choosing to see only the positive in everything and everyone around her. As hard as it currently is, she never ceases to amaze me with her selflessness, the beautiful light that she brings to everyone around her. She truly is a remarkable woman and we are all so fortunate to have her in our lives!” Barnett is now free from jail and is giving her first interview with 48 Hours on November 14, 8pm on CBS.
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