A judge in Van Nuys dismissed child-stealing charges Monday against the mother of a 17-month old boy because she had received no official notice that her son had been placed in protective custody.
Diana Lee Allen, 29, of Sepulveda was charged with abducting her son, William Moriarty Jr., on Nov. 7 from Valley Presbyterian Hospital in Van Nuys, where social workers said he was recovering from physical and sexual abuse. The child's father, William Moriarty Sr., and his girlfriend, Cindy Lee Ayers, have been charged with child abuse and child endangerment in the case.
Social worker Marsha Harris testified at Allen's preliminary hearing that she told Allen in October that the boy was in protective custody and might be placed in foster care. She described Allen as "shaking and somewhat tearful."
Two weeks later, during evening visiting hours, Allen lifted her son from a playpen and took him from the hospital, authorities said.