Malibu sign
Photo by John Schreiber.

A 39-year-old woman was in a Lynwood jail Monday on suspicion of trying to snatch the 9-month-old grandchild of NFL legend Joe Montana from a Malibu home, only to be thwarted by Montana and his wife, Jennifer.

Montana flagged down deputies from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Lost Hills station about 5 p.m. Saturday. He told them his 9-month-old grandchild had been sleeping in the playpen when an unknown woman entered the home in the 22100 block of Pacific Coast Highway, removed the baby and held the child in her arms.

“Mr. Montana and his wife Jennifer confronted the female, attempted to de-escalate the situation and asked for the suspect to give back their grandchild. A tussle ensued, and Mrs. Montana was able to safely pry the child out of the suspect’s arms,” sheriff’s officials said.

The woman fled the location. Deputies searched the area and found Sodsai Dalzell and took her into custody on suspicion of kidnapping and burglary.

Dalzell was being held at the Century Regional Detention Facility, a women’s jail in Lynwood, in lieu of $150,000 bail. She is scheduled in court in Van Nuys Tuesday at 8:30 a.m.

The 64-year-old Montana tweeted about the incident Sunday afternoon, saying, “Thank you to everyone who has reached out. Scary situation, but thankful that everybody is doing well. We appreciate respect for our privacy at this time.”

Now investigators are reaching out to people in the neighborhood and seeking possible video surveillance from businesses or residences in the area.

“They have to contact all those different people,” said Det. T. Koerner of the Sheriff’s Information Bureau, speaking of the challenges ahead for deputies as they attempt to piece together the story behind the incident in an area where many owners don’t actually live on-site. “It may take them awhile.”

It’s not clear where Dalzell lives.

The sheriff’s Malibu/Lost Hills station urged anyone with information regarding the attempted abduction to call 818-878-1808.

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