Alleged child abductor makes bail in Toronto

Patricia O'Byrne returns to Victoria while awaiting trial in Ontario

A Victoria woman accused of kidnapping her infant daughter more than 18 years ago is headed back to the city after being granted bail by an Ontario court, according to media outlets.

Patricia O’Byrne, 54, made national headlines last month when Victoria detectives arrested her at home in the 2000-block of Howard St. She was charged with abduction in violation of a custody order, and was returned to Toronto.

Police say she had been living under the name of Pam Whalen and had given her daughter an alias. Her 20-year-old daughter’s identity is protected by a court-imposed publication ban.

O’Byrne’s next court date is Jan. 25 in Toronto. The terms of her bail mandate that she stay on Vancouver Island except to attend court or visit her daughter.

She worked under her assumed name as a public affairs officer in the provincial government from 2004 to May 2011.

She allegedly fled Toronto with her then 20-month-old daughter in 1993. O’Byrne and Joe Chisholm, the girl’s father, had recently been granted joint custody.