Lanees Issa. Photo courtesy of the LAPD
Lanees Issa. Photo courtesy of the LAPD

Criminal charges were filed Friday against the father of a 2-year-old girl who was the subject of an Amber Alert after she was taken from a county facility in Chatsworth.

Louai Nayel Issa, 27, pleaded not guilty to one felony count each of kidnapping and child stealing, along with one misdemeanor count of brandishing a replica gun.

Issa allegedly brandished a replica gun at a Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services worker at the end of a supervised visit with the girl Wednesday, according to Deputy District Attorney Whelma Llanos.

A second man arrived in a getaway vehicle during what appeared to be a pre-planned abduction, and both men drove off with the girl, police said.

Issa was found with the girl Wednesday night in a Westlake neighborhood, authorities said.

Police were alerted to the presence of the missing girl in Westlake by the manager of the nearby apartment complex where the father lived, according to Los Angeles Police Department Sgt. Stacey Vandersall. A perimeter was established and the father was taken into custody around 10:40 p.m. without incident, she said.

The girl was unharmed.

Issa — who remains jailed — is due back in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom Sept. 11, when a hearing is set to determine if there is enough evidence to require him to stand trial.

If convicted of the charges, he could face up to 14 years in state prison, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

—City News Service

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