1-year-old Blaise Barnett was sitting in his family’s SUV in front of their Atlanta area home while his parents took groceries into their apartment.
Mom said he was in the car for maybe 30 seconds and by the time they returned to the parking lot the car was gone with their son.
The car has since been found but baby Blaise is still missing.
Read below via The Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
It took maybe 30 seconds for the family of Blaise Barnett to take their eyes off the 1-year-old boy as they unloaded groceries early Wednesday morning, and he was gone.
In that time, they say someone climbed into the driver’s seat of their gray Ford Explorer and took off with the toddler — wearing only a diaper and a black shirt with blue dinosaurs — still strapped in his car seat.
An Amber Alert was issued for the child early Wednesday, and for 10 hours police had no leads in the case.
Shortly before noon, a tipster followed a hunch and located the stolen SUV a few miles away.
But Blaise was not inside, Clarkston police officials confirmed during a news conference Wednesday afternoon.
The Explorer, which had paper tags, was obscured by bushes at the vacant Brannon Hills Condominiums complex along Memorial College Avenue, police said.
It was towed from the scene by a wrecker, and Clarkston police later confirmed the child’s car seat and blanket were still inside.
James Dent told Channel 2 Action News he first spotted a man walking in the area, which drew his attention to the stolen vehicle.
Dent said he tried to approach the man, but he ran off shouting. Clarkston police found the man and questioned him, but released him a short time later.
“I just kept saying this is a dream. This just can’t be real,” Xavier Barnett told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution from outside his Clarkston apartment as the search for his son continued into Wednesday night.
“I just broke down. Please, bring him home. The car don’t even matter, just bring my son home.”
Blaise Barnett was reported missing at 1 a.m. from the Parc 1000 apartments at 1000 Montreal Road.
According to a police report, Blaise’s parents were running bags of groceries to their apartment and returned to the parking lot to find their vehicle and their son gone.
His father told police he carried his 3-year-old nephew inside first and was coming back for the toddler.
“He was in there for probably like 30 seconds, maybe, and within those 30 seconds he came back outside and the car was gone with Blaise in it,” Deonna Bray, the child’s mother, told the AJC.
— John Spink (@johnjspink) November 10, 2021
The vehicle was not left running, but its keys were in the cupholder, according to the report. Blaise was strapped into the black-and-tan car seat and the blanket was wrapped around his legs, his parents told police.
The GBI issued the alert, known as a Levi’s Call in Georgia, on behalf of the Clarkston Police Department on Wednesday morning.
The Barnett and Bray families and their friends searched for Blaise all morning and afternoon alongside police officers, going door to door to speak with neighbors in the area, Clarkston officials said. They planned to hold a vigil Wednesday night.
As a parent I’m totally confused why either of them would leave the baby in a running car, even for “30 seconds.” I’m praying for his safe return home but will remain confused.
— Donnell Suggs (@suggswriter) November 10, 2021
Not a tear, watery eye, red eye, hesitation in the voice or anything. When I first started watching, I thought maybe she was the neighbor reporting what she saw, not the mother of a missing baby, that was out at 1 am in nothing but a tshirt and a diaper.
— ¡Azúcar MO Negra! (@AZUCAR_Mo_Negra) November 10, 2021
I’m also sure the their is confused on why a baby was left in a car that was running. He just wants the car and not the baby. Hoping he places the baby somewhere safe. However, those parents are also to blame on this. You can NEVER leave children in a car by themselves.
— Elle LeggeroPierra (@therunneryogi) November 10, 2021
Anyone who spots the child is asked to call Clarkston police at 404-557-8956 or dial 911.