NJ mother left child in running vehicle stolen by brazen car thief


WEST ORANGE – Police are reminding parents not to leave their children in a moving vehicle unattended after a car theft nearly turned into a kidnapping.

A mother left her engine on and left her child in the car when she entered a store on Columbia Street shortly after noon Wednesday, West Orange spokesman Joseph Fagan told New Jersey 101.5. At approximately 12:12 p.m., the police received a call reporting a stolen engine.

Officers arrived on the scene and found the car just one block from the store. Only the child, unharmed, was still in the vehicle.

“The suspect abandoned the stolen vehicle after realizing a child was in the car and fled,” Fagan said. The man was seen driving away in a “frantic manner” towards Watchung Avenue.

Witnesses described the suspect as a short-haired man standing five-foot-five, according to Fagan. He wore a T-shirt with a graphic or logo on it.

The mother refused medical assistance for herself or the child at the scene.

Rick Rickman is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at [email protected]

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