ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando police on Thursday continue to search for a man accused of stealing a vehicle with a 5-year-old girl inside that was parked outside a sandwich shop.
The incident happened around 7:40 p.m. Wednesday at Gabriel’s Submarine Sandwich Shop on Edgewater Drive.
According to Orlando police, a man went into the sub shop to check on his fiancee, leaving his daughter, who was asleep, alone in the car.
The man told officers that within a matter of seconds, a man entered the vehicle and drove away, heading east on Edgewater Drive, according to police.
“This is an isolated incident and it was a crime of opportunity,” Orlando Police public information officer Heidi Rodriquez said.
Surveillance video from outside the sandwich shop shows the couple chasing the vehicle as it pulls out of the parking lot.
Here is another video of the suspect entering the victims vehicle with the five year year in the rear seat sleeping. pic.twitter.com/PVaHWKXjZQ— Orlando Police (@OrlandoPolice) March 5, 2020
Police said the car was found about a mile away on Ardsley Drive, with the girl inside. She was not injured, police said.
Please help us locate the suspect who took a vehicle w/a 5 year old little girl sleeping inside. Thankfully she has been located safe. Now help us ID him. If you know him please call @CrimelineFL or 911 pic.twitter.com/3AfIhC3F1a— Orlando Police (@OrlandoPolice) March 5, 2020
The suspected car thief was described by police as a black teen or young man, about 5 feet, 8 inches tall and 170 pounds, with a flattop haircut. He was wearing a red jacket with a hoodie and white shorts.
Police released a photo and video of the suspected car thief from surveillance cameras that were installed at the shop a few weeks ago.
Kyle Gabriel, the son of the sub shop’s owner, said he was working when the incident occurred.
Please help us identify the suspect from yesterday’s kidnapping at Gabriel’s Sub shop, 3006 Edgewater Dr. Suspect took a vehicle with a 5yr old sleeping in the back. pic.twitter.com/0Yy1HJ2fjl— Orlando Police (@OrlandoPolice) March 5, 2020
“The next thing I know I hear the wife scream and say, ‘That’s my car. My baby is in the back of the car,’” he said. “Her and her husband just jet out of the shop as quickly as they could and, yeah, everything happened so quick."
Paula Kennedy, who lives on Ardsley Drive told News 6 that police officers spent hours in her neighborhood searching for the culprit.
“We are just going to remain vigilant and be on the lookout. Hope they find this guy soon,” Kennedy said.
Anyone with information about the assailant is asked to call 911.
Watch News 6 and stay with ClickOrlando.com for updates.