‘My best friend tried to murder me and steal my unborn baby from my belly’

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    A woman has recalled the terrifying moment she found out her best friend was trying to kill her — all so she could get her hands on her unborn baby.

    Angelique Robledo, from Arizona, was pregnant with her first child in 2011 when she was introduced to Kassandra Toruga by a mutual friend who believed they'd get on because they were both pregnant.

    The pair, who were both 18, developed a close connection over their pregnancies, spending months discussing baby names and nursery themes.

    READ MORE: 'My daughter's brother is actually her dad and I don't know how to tell her'

    But one afternoon, when Angelique was nine months pregnant, this all changed after she uncovered a sinister plot by Toruga.

    She discovered her supposed friend was actually a 'womb raider' — a person who attempts to abduct the unborn baby of a pregnant woman by cutting it out of her womb, usually killing the mother in the process.

    Recalling their friendship, Angelique told Unfiltered Stories: "Everything seemed normal, everything seemed fine".

    That was until Toruga began acting strangely in mid-February.

    "That week I remember she kept asking me to come to her house," she said.

    "Very specifically she wanted me to come to her," she said.

    Angelique decided to invite the fellow teen to her home, where she lived with her mum, instead and she came over on February 16.

    But when her mum left the house, Angelique remembers "things started to get weird".

    Toruga told Angelique she had gifts for her, including a nursery light, and lured Angelique into her bedroom insisting she received the gift there.

    After going inside, Toruga turned off all the lights and came up behind Angelique as she sat on her bed.

    Angelique revealed she soon began getting an eerie "feeling" something bad was about to happen.

    "I am having these thoughts in my head telling me 'you're gonna get stabbed, you're gonna get stabbed. You're going to die'."

    She recalled how Torgua made her lean over before she began counting down to reveal her "gift".

    "Right when she says 'three' I turn around and I jump up and I run to my light and I turn the light switch on," Angelique said.

    At that same moment, Toruga's phone started ringing and she quickly put something back in her bag before Angelique could see what it was.

    Toruga then told Angelique her water had broken but when Angelique refused to go to the hospital with her until she told her mum where she was going, Toruga backtracked and claimed it had just been a "false alarm".

    But things took another sinister turn when Toruga went into Angelique's room alone and began trying on dresses.

    Moments later Angelique recalled how "it smelled like something was burning" and immediately suspected Toruga was lighting her house on fire.

    A huge blaze quickly erupted inside Angelique's closet and the smoke sent her into a coughing fit as she attempted to put it out.

    The pair fled the burning house and as Angelique waited for emergency services to arrive, Toruga went "running down the street barefoot".

    At this point, Angelique suspected Toruga has been trying to kill her but was scared people would think she was "crazy" if she said anything.

    As paramedics checked her over, Toruga came back to the home and told medics she wanted to go to hospital.

    As they prepared to leave, they went to take her bag but Angelique knew this was the only chance she had at finding out whether her friend really had been trying to harm her.

    Before they could take it, she emptied out the bag and made a horrifying discovery.

    "I do it in front of everybody. I put it on top of the counter, I put my hand into the bag and the first thing my hands touch are two metal objects," she said.

    "When I pull them out, they're two large butcher knives, a pair of scissors and she had a newborn diaper"

    An investigation into the incident uncovered Toruga's dark plan.

    The 18-year-old had never been pregnant. Instead, she'd been planning to steal Angelique's baby by stabbing her in the back before cutting the unborn child out of her.

    When her stabbing plot didn't work, she came up with a new plan to set the house on fire.

    "She was hoping that I would be overcome by smoke and I would pass out and she would be able to perform the C-section there," Angelique said.

    It was a police officer who first revealed Toruga's sick motive.

    "I'm pretty sure the police officer, the detective, was the one that told me 'this is something that sounds like fetal abduction' and that was like 'Whoa! Like what?' that's when I was like 'Oh my gosh, this is a whole thing'."

    Angelique gave birth to her son, Ryland on February 26, 2011 and just days later, police arrested Toruga after her sister reported her location and she confessed to the plot.

    "Her sister, the person who is her blood relative, is the one that made it happen and I can't be more thankful because I don't know what would've happened I we didn't get that confession," Angelique said.

    In February 2012, Toruga was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in a mental health facility after taking a plea bargain.

    As part of the bargain, Angelique revealed she was allowed to choose whether Toruga, who was schizophrenic, manic depressive and bipolar, served her time in prison or at a mental institution.

    She chose the latter, explaining: "I felt bad for her because it just sucked that she was sick… I obviously still felt a lot of rage and I wanted her to pay for what she did but I knew that at some point in her life she was gonna get out.

    "I decided that she was going to be out in this world one day and I don't want her to come out and do this again to somebody so I put her in Ash, which is the Arizona state hospital."

    In 2020 Angelique, who's now a married mother of three, started going to therapy, learning she'd been left with a lot of trauma from the incident.

    "Just because she didn't succeed in her plot didn't mean that I hadn't gone through something so traumatic that scarred me for the rest of my life."

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