Store where vehicle was parked at the time of the theft. WBEN Photo/Tim Wenger

Two month old baby located after being taken in unattended running car

Mother charged with endangering the welfare of a child

December 02, 2018 - 12:44 pm

Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) - The mother of an infant who was taken in an unattended and running vehicle Saturday has been arrested and charged.  The mother is charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

Late Saturday night Buffalo Police charged 18 year old Aaron Williams of Niagara Falls and a 15 year old male of Buffalo with the theft of a vehicle from Hertel and Niagara.  It was also learned the two committed an armed robbery of a person exiting their car in the 2000 block of Niagara Street. Police say they stole $200 and a cell phone from the victim. They were subsequently charged with Robbery in the first degree.

Buffalo Police Captain Jeffrey Rinaldo says the child was taken in an unattended and running vehicle parked outside a liquor store on Niagara Street near Hertel Avenue.  Rinaldo says after the mother of the infant went inside the store, her vehicle was stolen by two black males and the woman contacted police.

"We immediately set up a command post and began a grid search as well as notifying every law enforcement agency in Erie County to be on the lookout for the vehicle", Rinaldo told WBEN at D-District headquarters on Hertel Saturday afternoon. The baby was dropped off at Niagara Falls Memorial Center by one of the suspects. Police say they have arrested a 15-year old and an 18-year old.

Initial information released by police about the baby being found in a car seat along the 190 has been proven false. The mother's SUV was found in Niagara Falls.

"This happened in the blink of an eye based on some video evidence that was recovered", said Rinaldo. 

Rinaldo has strong advice for residents, saying, "do not leave your vehicle running with the keys in the car.  You are creating an attractive nuisance and never, ever leave a car running with a child in the car".  The car was unlocked, running and the keys were in the ignition at the time of the theft.

New York State Police along with local agencies assisted in the investigation and the Erie County Sheriff Air One helicopter was deployed in the search.


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