A 2-year-old girl left in a running vehicle became an accidental kidnapping victim when the car was stolen as her parents spoke to a family member in Hopkins.
Around 9:55 p.m. Saturday, a married couple stepped out of their car for a moment at a Sagemont Drive home to speak to some relatives, the Richland County Sheriff’s Department said. They said they left the girl in the car because they were just going to be out for a moment and she was sleeping.
The mother told deputies she saw her car’s headlights come on from inside the house. As she and others ran outside, they were confronted by two men who pointed handguns at them and told them not to come closer. They then drove the car out of the driveway.
Around 11:50 p.m., a patrolling deputy found the the stolen car, with the girl unharmed inside, at Hopkins Elementary School on Cabin Creek Road. The girl was returned to her mother, who was called to the school.
The car thieves remain at large. One is described as a thin black male in his late teens to early 20s, about 5 feet, 10 inches tall. He was wearing a red baseball hat and dark clothing. The other man also is a black male of similar age and build, about 6 feet tall and weighing around 165 pounds. He was wearing all-dark clothing.