Katie Sorensen, a parenting influencer on Instagram, was arrested and charged after she racially profiled a Latino couple and accused them of attempting to kidnap her children.
Back in December 2020, Sorensen was out running some errands with her children, including a quick run to a Michael's craft store to pick up supplies for some homemade holiday gifts.
Sorensen claimed a Latino couple, since identified as Sadie Vega-Martinez and Eddie Martinez, had made suggestive comments about her children, attempted to kidnap them and Eddie Martinez had at one point even lunged at her stroller.
Sorensen created two Instagram videos to recount the event, which are no longer available to the public. These videos received more than 5 million views each before the truth came out.
You can view a short excerpt of the first video here:
Katie Sorensen says strangers tried to kidnap her kids outside the Petaluma @MichaelsStores after following them ar… https://t.co/qGFh94joYj— Henry K. Lee (@Henry K. Lee) 1607993100.0
Sorensen said, appearing shaken:
"This is hard for me." I'm not ready to share this story, but I know it's important."
"I would rather be uncomfortable, and awkward, and get the message out sooner than wait until I feel composed, because I don't know if I'll ever be composed talking about this."
"My children were the targets of an attempted kidnap."
After the videos claimed hundreds of thousands of views, the Petaluma police began an investigation in an attempt to identify the couple and bring them to justice.
But the evidence police found in security cam footage didn't support Sorensen's claims.
Instead, what they found confirmed the couple's suspicions Sorensen racially profiled them. Sorensen also was not honest in the details of her story, as the couple did not appear to follow the mother and stroller and there was no lunging for the stroller.
Because of this, Sorensen was arrested and charged with two misdemeanors according to the Sonoma County District Attorney's Office.
Sadie Vega-Martinez stated:
"We're very happy with the news. It's a nice step toward justice. It gives you hope."
Viewers were disgusted by Sorensen's lies and racial profiling.
@henrykleeKTVU @petaluma_police @MichaelsStores Honestly surprised there even was a couple. She just wanted to go viral and now, she has.— Janny (@Janny) 1608354220.0
@henrykleeKTVU @petaluma_police @MichaelsStores White people really need to stop being racist, like yesterday. Trul… https://t.co/7lqMJR1Vnc— Ben Godfrey (@Ben Godfrey) 1608268468.0
@henrykleeKTVU @petaluma_police @MichaelsStores @KTVU She might actually need to have her kids taken now, for their own safety.— Matthew Dalton (@Matthew Dalton) 1608335182.0
@henrykleeKTVU @stephemcneal @petaluma_police @MichaelsStores @KTVU I hope @petaluma_police can get Sorenson for wa… https://t.co/diEMvb1yji— Nicholas Sammons (@Nicholas Sammons) 1608593025.0
@henrykleeKTVU @petaluma_police @MichaelsStores This is white privilege at its worst. I hope they throw the book at her.— Devin Nunes can suck my paper straw (@Devin Nunes can suck my paper straw) 1619747618.0
@henrykleeKTVU @petaluma_police @MichaelsStores Maybe Katie is just a drama queen looking for sympathy of some kind… https://t.co/9ZzrcoHZvv— socityjim (@socityjim) 1608348051.0
The wrongfully accused couple's daughter, Esaia Gonzalez, stated:
"This isn't the first racist injustice to occur in Petaluma by a long shot, but we are definitely grateful that in this case, the truth was rightfully pursued."
Sorensen has since updated her Instagram handle from @MotherhoodEssentials to @MotherhoodEssentials_ (adding an underline to the end) and set her account to private, so the general public cannot view or comment on her content.
Sorenson has a follow-up appearance in court on May 13.