SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. – A man suspected of carjacking a vehicle with two young children inside was arrested after he was chased by good Samaritans and crashed in Southern California, police said Monday.
The kids' mother jumped onto the hood of her car when she saw it being driven away from a convenience store where she had stopped and left the engine running Sunday night, San Bernardino Lt. Rich Lawhead told The Associated Press.
"I lost grip as he swerved. I fell off," Tatanisha Golden told reporters at the scene.
Golden landed on the pavement and watched helplessly as the car sped off carrying her two babies — a boy and a girl, clad only in diapers and secured in car seats.
Two witnesses in a car followed the suspect and alerted police, Lawhead said. The suspect crashed Golden's car and ran from the scene into a residential neighborhood. A police K9 unit found Steven Young hiding nearby thanks to a tip from a resident who witnessed the crash, Lawhead said.
Young could face charges including carjacking and kidnapping. Lawhead described the suspect as a 21-year-old transient from the San Bernardino area. It wasn't immediately known if he has an attorney.
The children were unhurt and reunited with their mother.
Investigators weren't sure if Young knew there were kids in the back seat when he jumped behind the wheel.
Golden told police she only ran into the store for a minute and had her kids within her sight the whole time.
"She learned a valuable lesson," Lawhead said. "You don't want to leave your kids alone, for any amount of time."