Trauma as car stolen with toddler strapped in back seat in County Durham carjacking

·2-min read
The incident happened in Church Street, Quarrington Hill, on Wednesday evening. Picture: GOOGLE
The incident happened in Church Street, Quarrington Hill, on Wednesday evening. Picture: GOOGLE

Distraught relatives of a two-year-old girl watched helplessly as thieves stole a car while she was strapped in a safety seat in the back.

A family had parked their silver Vauxhall Vectra outside a relative’s house to drop shopping off when a dark Nissan X-Trail pulled up in the street and drove slowly past.

The engine of the Vauxhall was still running while one member of the family stood by the car door and others took items inside.

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The suspect vehicle then reversed back along the street to pull alongside the Vauxhall and a man, dressed in a blue hooded jacket and black joggers, jumped out and climbed into the driver’s seat, with the two-year-old strapped into a car seat in the rear.

He then took off at speed as the distressed family tried to stop him.

The terrifying incident happened on Church Street in Quarrington Hill, near Durham City, at about 7pm last night. (Wednesday, September 21)

The Vectra was discovered about three miles away around Sherburn Beck, near Ludworth.

The toddler was physically unharmed and was quickly reunited with her family, however, their pet cat, which was also in the vehicle at the time, has yet to be located.

The Nissan X-Trail has not been located and police are now appealing for witnesses.

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Detective Inspector Malcolm Bell, of Durham Constabulary, said: “This has been an extremely distressing incident for the family, who were terrified for the welfare of their child.

“We are appealing to anyone who may have seen this car being stolen or abandoned to come forward.

“We are also looking for anyone who may have seen the Nissan X-Trail at the time, or in immediate time before and after this incident.

“Thankfully, the child was located inside the car, safe and well, and was quickly reunited with her family.”

Anyone with any information or dash cam/CCTV footage is asked to contact Detective Sergeant Andy Davison, of Durham Constabulary, on 101, quoting incident reference 341 of September 21.

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