Thanks to some quick thinking, an 8-year-old girl from San Diego, California, saved herself and her 3-year-old brother from a kidnapper at the last moment.
On April 9, 2018, Malaiah and her brother went to a beauty supply warehouse with their father, Rodney Cole. It was a hot day outside and since he knew it would just be a quick trip, he left his children in the running car with the air conditioning on.
Less than two minutes had passed before the kidnapper, a woman, saw her opportunity.
Malaiah recalls, “She looked at the car and she saw it running and she saw kids in it. Then she just got in it and drive away.”
Rodney, who was still inside the store, saw the woman driving away with his children and ran out into the street, screaming and pounding on the windows of his car.
But it was too late. The woman rolled up the windows and sped off.
That’s when Malaiah remembered that her father had given her a cell phone to use in case of an emergency.
She told the woman to take them back to their dad or she would call the police. When the woman refused, the brave young girl called 911.
The woman tried to grab the phone from her as she was speaking to the dispatcher, but because she was in the backseat the 8-year-old was able to find a place where it couldn’t be reached.
“She said, ‘Give me the phone or I’m going to drive in circles and crash into the freeway wall,'” she told ABC 7.
Malaiah wasn’t able to tell the dispatcher her exact location, but she did see a sign that said “Mexico Border.” That was just enough information for authorities to find them.
A video was captured of police surrounding the car just moments before they could cross the border.
It was an extremely close call, but both Malaiah and her brother are safe. “Probably less than two minutes away from actually crossing the border,” a witness said.
Rodney wasn’t able to hold back his tears after hearing his daughter recount the details of the day. “I’m very proud of her,” he said.
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