Tammi Smith: Good Or Evil?

By Meri Ulrich
May 21, 2012

As some of you might know, two years ago a little boy referred to in the media as "Baby Gabriel" disappeared after his unstable mother Elizabeth Johnson ran away to San Antonio, Texas. She was running form a brewing custody battle over her son with his biological father Logan Mcqueary.

To make a very long and sad story short I will stick to the topic of Tammi Smith, a woman who was instrumental in helping Elizabeth keep her son from his father. For the past several weeks Smith has been on trial here in Arizona and on Thursday she was found guilty of both counts levied against her. The first was Conspiracy to commit Custodial Interference and the second was Forgery on a legal document.

Tammi met Elizabeth in an Airport and within a short time was conspiring with Elizabeth to adopt her son without the knowledge of his father. In Arizona, even though a father's name may be on the birth certificate and even though he is proven to be the biological parent, a Judge must decide if he has any custodial rights over the child. At the time of Tammi and Elizabeth's meeting Logan McQueary had no such rights.

As time passed and Logan discovered that Elizabeth had not bonded with their child, was violent when she didn't get her way and had a tendency to run away from perceived problems, he went to court to secure his rights and custody of the baby. This was granted in an order from the Judge granting shared custody.

By the time this even had occurred Tammi Smith had given Elizabeth many ways out of allowing Logan to have anything to do with his child and had even signed Guardianship papers and taken possession of the baby boy along with her husband Jack Smith. Tammi had "researched" many different manners of avoiding Logan's parental rights and had helped and supported Elizabeth in her personal vendetta against Logan. She had even gone so far as to "forge" the name of her cousin (a gay man named Greg Cherry) on a paternity document so as to stall the proceedings and force Logan and others to have to take paternity tests to determine who was Gabriel's real father. She had found places where Elizabeth could go in order to change jurisdiction over the Arizona Court system and had generally made sure that she would get that baby for herself. Tammi Smith was a desperate woman who was obsessed with getting another baby.

Tammi had approached another woman in a Jack In The Box to adopt her unborn child, advertized for babies on the internet and tried surrogacy in order to fulfill her dream of securing yet another child. She had three children of her own who she lost in a custody fight to their father many years ago and had adopted (along with her husband, Jack), his own granddaughter. This wasn't good enough for barren Tammi; she needed another child...a sibling for Hannah, her adopted daughter (step-Granddaughter). Tammi Smith would stop at nothing to achieve her goals.

I guess what bothered me the most about the case was that "Baby Gabriel" is missing and has not been seen since Elizabeth ran away to Texas where she first claimed to have smothered him and thrown him a dumpster. She than claimed that she gave him to a couple of strangers in a park. To this day, no one knows where he is or what happened to him. What we know for sure is that Tammi and Elizabeth were in constant contact and had it not been for Tammi's interference and manipulation of the situation Gabriel might be with his father today.

The jury found Tammi guilty on both counts and it wasn't too much of a stretch to also believe that she either helped Elizabeth get away from Arizona, knows where the baby is or at the very least lied her way through the entire sorted story.

What bothered me most about Tammi Smith was her odd behavior and the fact that she claimed over and over again to be a good Christian who only had the baby's best interest in mind and in her heart. Throughout the trial as we watched her chest grow redder and redder as she clutched a large, ornate cross I wondered how she dared to claim her Christianity to the world.She has stated over and over that she is "in God's will" and that she is fine because God is protecting her. As she lied and forged and interfered and deprived a man of his son I wondered how she managed to delude herself into believing that God would approve or sanction such egregious behavior. She was judgmental, unforgiving, cruel and lied constantly to everyone. How is this being a good Christian?

I am not a Christian but I am close to those who believe strongly in Christian principles and who adhere to those principles. I am aware of how generous and kind these people are and how they truly believe that only God can judge others. Knowing what I know of their life-long commitment to Christianity I had a difficult time associating anything that Tammi Smith did or said with Christianity or God. It seemed to me that the devil was more at work in the brain of Tammi Smith than a high power that represents all things good. Surely, Tammi Smith personifies evil.

I don't know what the Judge will do to punish Tammi but I believe that God will have His moment with her somewhere along the line.

In the meantime the most important question remains...Where is Baby Gabriel? Here is a link to the details of the "Baby Gabriel" case:

National Center for Missing and Exploited Children at their 24-hour tip line: 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678).


About the author: Meri Ulrich has a Medical/Legal background and is a former forensic researcher specializing in psychological profiling.

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