Thieves ditch van with sleeping children inside

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OGDEN — Two thieves didn't get very far with a stolen van in Ogden Monday before they discovered they were getting deeper into crime than they intended.

The thieves swiped the van from a driveway near Grant Ave. and 32nd Street. As they drove away they must have looked in back and spotted two kids, because they dumped the van and ran only a half block away

Police say around 3 p.m., a woman and her friend were unloading groceries from their van while her 2-month-old son and her friend's 2-year old daughter slept in the van.

She hears the van start up, she runs outside, they see the van heading eastbound on 32nd Street.

–Ogden Police Lt. Danielle Croyle

"She hears the van start up, she runs outside, they see the van heading eastbound on 32nd Street.," said Ogden Police Lt. Danielle Croyle.

The woman's daughter says her mom was in the bathroom when the van disappeared. "It happened in the blink of an eye," Guadalupe Bravo said. "She came inside screaming that someone had kidnapped the kids. That's when we all went out and called 911."

Police quickly started to search while neighbors tried to comfort the family.

"I saw the little girl standing with the neighbors, and she was just crying hysterically," neighbor Tamra Lucero said. "She just kept saying, ‘They took my baby brother! They took my baby brother!'"

In less than a half hour, a school bus aide listening to a scanner spotted the van at the intersection of 32nd Street and Keisel Avenue — only a half block from where the thieves swiped the van.

"The windows were tinted, but we could see that the toddler was inside. We could see the little booties of the baby, so we knew that the baby was in there," said the bus aide, who didn't want to be identified.

She told KSL News after they spotted the van, she and her co-worker went and told police. Officers responded to find the kids still sleeping in the backseat.

"We just all got chills and it was just great. It was the neatest thing," the bus aide said.

Meanwhile, police hope to track down the thieves with the evidence they took from the van.


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Jed Boal


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