Car Thief Pulls U-Turn to Scold Mother Who Left 4-Year-Old in Vehicle

Yes, a crime was definitely committed, but the unidentified car thief at the center of it grants this story more integrity than that of your typical grand theft auto. The event occurred in Beaverton, Oregon, a city west of Portland with a population short of 100,000 people. When a thief spotted what Beaverton police describe as a “crime of opportunity” in an unlocked car with keys in the ignition, he immediately stole it from a parking lot, only to find a 4-year-old child in the backseat. That’s when things took a turn.

The child’s mother was shopping at Basics Meat Market at the time, purportedly less than 15 feet away from the car itself. Once the thief noticed the child, he made a quick U-turn in a nearby lot and returned to the scene of the crime. He then berated the mother for leaving the child in the unlocked car unattended and ordered her to remove them, which she promptly did. He then quickly drove off again in her 2013 silver Honda Pilot.

Beaverton police were quick to state that, technically, the fact that the mother was shopping so close to the car meant that the incident was not a crime of neglect. All the same, leaving her child there with the engine running and doors unlocked seems, by all accounts, a grievous error, and one that could have proven tragic were it not for this (somewhat) conscientious car thief.

As for the thief, he remains at large and the stolen car has not been recovered, but this story remains as an important reminder to keep young children close and secure, even at 9:00am on a Saturday morning shopping trip.

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