Iowa Department of Public Safety
215 East 7th Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50319

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For immediate release: Alex Murphy
  DCI Public Information Officer
Investigative Operations
Iowa Department of Public Safety
November 24, 2016
(515) 443-3014 - cell
(515) 725-6189 - office

Reported Child Abduction in Buffalo Center

BUFFALO CENTER, Iowa -- On November 23, 2016 around 4:25pm the Buffalo Center Chief of Police Matt Holmquist was flagged down by a motorist and alerted to suspicious activity near the 400 block of Second Street northwest.

A man and woman were seen walking up to a house and acting suspicious. Several minutes later the same couple were seen leaving with two small children. They walked to a silver SUV that had been parked a distance away from the house.

The Buffalo Center Police Department and the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the incident. A babysitter at the house told law enforcement that the two kids ages 3 and 1 were taken by an unknown male and the children’s biological mother, Ashley Machain, who had brandished a knife.

Law Enforcement began searching for the silver SUV, Machain and the male accomplice. At 2:25am the two children were recovered safely in Fort Dodge, Iowa. Machain and the male, Daniel Smith were taken into police custody. Machain was charged with Burglary 2nd (Class C Felony) and Child Endangerment (Class D Felony). Smith was charged with Burglary 2nd (Class C Felony) and Driving While Barred (Aggravated Misdemeanor).

Agencies Assisting- Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office, Forest City Police Department, the Iowa Department of Public Safety’s (DPS) Iowa State Patrol (ISP), Fort Dodge Police Department, Faribault County, MN Sheriff’s Office,  Wells, MN Police Department, Webster County Sheriff’s Office, Ames Police Department, Iowa State University Police Department, Department of Human Services and the Iowa Department of Public Safety’s (DPS) Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI).

Please refer any further questions to Winnebago County Attorney Adam Sauer.


Note: A criminal charge is merely an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

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