Motor vehicle thefts are not new and are rampant globally. Despite technological advancements from automakers and associated industries, auto thieves have devised new and sophisticated means of going around their business.
However, in a recent botched but bizarre incident of car theft in the US, the thief not only went ahead stealing the vehicle but surprisingly returned back as there was a child in the back seat. He then went on to reprimand the mother about her parenting skills.
According to The Oregonian report, the carjacking incident occurred outside a grocery store in Beaverton, Oregon on Saturday, January 16. The mother parked her car just outside the store’s front door and went inside to buy some milk and meat. However, she left the car running with her child in the backseat, local authorities said. She was never more than 15 feet away from the car, but she made a cardinal mistake of leaving her vehicle running and unlocked.
The suspect happened to walk by and noticed the car running without the driver. He instantly hopped in and drove away, only to realise minutes later that there was a four-year-old occupant in the back seat. He drove back to the parking area, reuniting the child with the mother, but not before reprimanding her and demanded she takes the child out of the backseat. He then drove off once again with the vehicle, Beaverton Police reported.
Beaverton Police, spokesperson Officer Matt Henderson, told CNN that the thief, identified to be in his 20s or 30s, hopped in the car, drove it, realized there was a 4-year-old inside, and drove back. “He ordered her to take the child out of the car and then drove away again,” Henderson said. He further added that they are thankful to the thief who ‘had the decency’ to turn back and reunite the little one with his mother.
Officer Henderson, termed the incident as ‘a crime of opportunity’ and said what the mother did was not a crime, as ‘she was within sight and sound of her child.’ He urged others not to leave their cars running and unlocked especially when there are children involved. ‘It’s a good reminder to take extra precaution when we have our little ones with us,’ he added.
Luckily in this bizarre carjacking incident, the little one remained unharmed, the police said.
Police recovered the woman’s car – a silver Honda Pilot in Portland a few hours later. However, they are still searching for the suspect who was described as white male with long dark brown braided hair.