Child, 8, uninjured after man steals car with her inside

On Wednesday, at approximately 6:20 a.m., Spokane Valley deputies responded to a report of a vehicle theft and abduction from the parking lot of Sam’s One Stop.

The victim told deputies she had been experiencing problems with her car battery so she left the vehicle running and keys in the ignition when she parked. Her 8-year-old daughter stayed seated in the backseat while the victim, planning on a quick stop, went into the store. When she exited the store a couple minutes later, her vehicle and her daughter were gone.

Approximately 10 minutes later, as multiple Spokane Valley and Spokane County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the area, a citizen reported a young female came to her door stating she was inside her mom’s car when it was stolen by a man. The child, who was uninjured, said she ran from the vehicle when the man stopped a short distance away.

Deputies located the stolen vehicle parked in the cul-de-sac at the west end of Marietta, just north of the Eagle Point Apartments. The suspect is believed to have fled the vehicle on foot, running along the north side of the apartments toward Bowdish.

Spokane Valley Deputy Phil Pfeifer and his partner K9 Enzo responded to area, along with multiple Deputies, Detectives and Air 1 to assist in the search, but their efforts were unsuccessful.

Spokane Valley Major Crimes Detectives are conducting the investigation and obtained these pictures of a person of interest.

Detectives ask anyone who can help identify this male to call Detective Darin Staley at 509-477-3160.

Detectives also ask businesses on Pines, between I-90 and Mansfield, and people living in a few block radius of Bowdish and Buckeye to review any surveillance video they may have between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. for footage of the possible suspect, any suspicious activity or information that may assist with this investigation.

Everyone at the Spokane Valley Police Department and Spokane County Sheriff’s Office is extremely thankful this young child was uninjured and quickly reunited with her mother but also ask our community to not leave vehicles running unattended for any reason or length of time.

As cold weather approaches, more drivers leave their vehicles running unattended to warm them up.