Missing Baby "Persons of Interest" Speak

An Arizona mother whose baby has been missing since just after Christmas is still refusing to cooperate with authorities, they say. Police add they don't know whether he's dead or alive.

And a Scottsdale, Ariz. couple who briefly took care of Gabriel Johnson and who've been named persons of interest in the eight-month-old's disappearance say they know nothing about where he is now.

His mother, Elizabeth Johnson, 23, of Tempe, Ariz., is in the Maricopa County Jail in Phoenix. She was extradited from Florida, where she was taken into custody Dec. 30 after she didn't show up for a child custody hearing in Phoenix.

Johnson faces three felony charges: kidnapping, child abuse and custodial interference. Gabriel was last seen with Elizabeth in San Antonio. She has claimed she gave him to complete strangers in a park in the city where, police say, she spent Dec. 22-27 at two motels.

Bond is set at $1.1 million in the case.

Gabriel's father, Logan McQueary, desperately wants his son back, notes "Early Show" national correspondent Hattie Kauffman. Elizabeth sent him a text message saying she had killed Gabriel, but later claimed she gave him away to the strangers in San Antonio.

"I really have a hard time believing she just randomly gave Gabriel, the little prince, to somebody in a park," Bob Johnson remarked.

But, Kauffman says, Elizabeth Johnson had already promised the baby to another couple, Jack and Tammi Smith. She met them in an airport seven months ago and, early last month, they took Gabriel into their home, with adoption an option.

Tammi Smith told "Early Show" co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez Monday she and her husband don't have any idea about Gabriel's whereabouts. "I sure wish we did. I sure wish (Elizabeth) told us any name, any -- of anything," Smith said.

"We spent ten years building a successful business here (in Scottsdale)," Jack Smith said, "and, for us to throw that away, or even the thoughts of throwing that away for someone we had known for nine days, that's ludicrous. No, absolutely not."

So why do they think police consider them persons of interest?

"Well, we should be!" Jack responded. "We were the last people to see Gabriel before he left Arizona. So I was not shocked at all that they named us. ... Whatever they have to do and whatever they -- because, we had a week and a day prior to them actually doing it, we asked for a polygraph test. If this will clear up -- 'If you think we don't know something, give us a polygraph test, and then let's go on and focus on where we need to.' And that is to find this baby and give this wonderful, wonderful child back to its rightful family."

They took the test. Results aren't back yet.

Tammi says that, while Elizabeth was never all that affectionate toward Gabriel, she doesn't think Elizabeth could have hurt him. "She seemed to want the best for him," Tammi says.

Elizabeth's grandfather, Bob Johnson, says he "can't even imagine Elizabeth hurting that child."

He says it was her plan to have the baby adopted --and she may have tried to get it done online. "She gets on that Craiglist," Bob Johnson says, and, "That gal could find somebody that would want to adopt the baby in five minutes."

He adds that Elizabeth was overwhelmed by motherhood, saying she became easily enraged and, often, physically destructive. As a child, she was abandoned by abusive parents and raised in foster care.

"She stated real clearly to me that she could not give the child the type of life that he deserves," Bob Johnson points out.

Tammi and Jack Smith also explained to Rodriguez how they came to bring Gabriel into their home:


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