The mother of three young brothers from Vernon who were at the center of an Amber Alert earlier in May appeared in court on Friday and a protective order was issued for her children.
The Vernon Police Department charged Jackie Morris, 32, with three counts of first-degree custodial interference and three counts of risk of injury to a minor.
Morris was arrested in Maine and waived extradition. On Friday, her attorney asked a judge in Rockville Superior Court to releasse her on a promise to appear.
"She is concerned with the welfare of her children and doesn't know where to turn," he attorney told the judge.
Morris was originally held on a $250,000 bond. On Friday, the judge set it to $20,000 and Morris is expected to be freed.
The judge also issued three no-contact protective orders for the children.
Jackie Morris has waived extradition from Maine. Arrangements for extradition are now being made. Anticipated she will return within week.
— Vernon CT Police (@VernonCTPolice) May 28, 2014
Her sons were returned home to Vernon on May 15 after police issued a multi-state alert that week as they searched for Ryan Lewis, age 9; and 7-year-old twins, Brandon Lewis and Dylan Lewis, after their mom failed to return them to their biological father following a weekend visit, police said.
Morris, their mother, has visitation rights, but concerns arose when disappeared after checking out of a Vernon motel on Mother's Day and the boys did not show up for school for two days after Mother's Day weekend.
The boys' father reached out to police on that Monday night and the alert – focused on Connecticut, Massachusetts and Maine – was issued, asking people to be on the lookout for a Red 2004 Jetta with Connecticut license plates.
By late Tuesday the next morning, Morris and the boys were found, safe, at a Hilton Garden Inn in Bangor, Maine, and Morris was taken into custody on a Connecticut warrant that charged her as a fugitive from justice.
"We do know that the three children are with her. They are in good condition. We are working with the Connecticut Department of Children and Families, who will be working with the Maine Department of Children and Families to coordinate the return of the kids," said Lt. James Grady, of Vernon, Connecticut police, in a news conference just before noon.
Morris was charged with three counts of custodial interference in the first degree and three counts of risk of injury to a minor, according to police.She is next due in court on June 24.
Surveillance footage captured at the Quality Inn Hotel in Vernon this past weekend reportedly shows Morris hugging and kissing her children. The hotel manager, Ghulam Sarwar, said the family has stayed at the Quality Inn on multiple occasions and he's never had any cause for concern.
"She's always nice to the kids," Sarwar explained. "She never has a problem with the kids."
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services took temporary custody of the boys until their father picked them up. A family member said the boys returned home early that Wednesday morning and are doing well.
Before issuing an Amber Alert, police issued a Silver Alert. It was upgraded to the Amber Alert because of the mother's mental health, police said, without elaborating on the mental health conditions.
A news release from Maine State Police said Morris had likely been living in her car in Maine.