Man charged with kidnapping after allegedly stealing car with baby boy on board

A man has been charged with theft and kidnapping offences after he allegedly stole a car with a baby on board in Melbourne’s south-east on Tuesday.

Emergency services were called following reports a white 2013 Toyota RAV 4 was stolen from Putt Grove at Keysborough about 2.10pm.

Victoria Police Inspector Fiona Halford said the mother of the infant had momentarily stopped on the street and had gotten out of the car when an unknown man jumped in the driver’s seat and drove off.

“The parents are quite distressed,” she said on Tuesday afternoon.

“Police are looking after them [and] giving them every support that we can give them, but as you can imagine, when their 11-month-old baby is missing, they are very distressed.”

A few minutes later, Inspector Halford told the media police had found the baby boy safe and well in Cranbourne about 5.40pm – 3½ hours after he went missing – following a tip-off from the public.

“I just cannot thank the public enough. It was a member of the general public who notified police of the location and subsequently police have attended that location and found the child safe and well,” she said.

“Without the general public, I’m not sure we’d be having this conversation right now.”

A 46-year-old man from Frankston has been charged with kidnapping, stealing a motor vehicle, committing an indictable offence on bail and driving without a licence.

He has been remanded to appear before the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Wednesday.

With Cassandra Morgan

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