MILWAUKEE (AP/WITI) — A mother who left her 14-month-old child in a car that was stolen won’t face charges in Milwaukee County.
Amber Strube says a prosecutor told her he didn’t want to add more stress to a terrifying situation. Strube ran into a gas station and left her child sleeping inside the running vehicle last week in Milwaukee.
A 15-year-old girl is charged with stealing the car, which was later found abandoned with the child safe inside.
According to police, it was around 7:30 a.m. on April 2nd when Strube walked into a store and left her vehicle running with her one-year-old child inside. She paid a frightening price for a soda and a muffin — because soon, a female suspect arrived at the scene in a stolen car and drove off in the Strube’s car — her young son still inside.
“I hear the car engine like, turning because the car was already started and said to the clerk, ‘that don`t sound good,'” Strube said.
Store surveillance cameras didn’t catch the theft, but when Strube exited the store, she noticed her car was gone.
“I look and I was just in shock. My car! Where is it? And ‘there is the lady taking off with my car!'” Strube said.
The store clerk says Strube was frightened when she realized her son was still inside.
“When she opened the door she started crying. ‘Oh God. My baby. My baby!'” the clerk said.
A customer saw what had happened and followed Strube’s car — giving police information about the direction it was headed.
Officers found the stolen vehicle minutes later in the 3000 block of S. 50th Street. It was abandoned with the child inside. Police say Elijah was unharmed. He was reunited with his mother.
“He`s good. He`s my miracle baby,” Strube said.
On top of tremendous fear, followed by tremendous relief, Strube was then worried she could be criminally charged.
“I go to court on Wednesday to find out if I will be charged with a neglect case — a felony neglect case and I’ve never been charged with nothing!” Strube said.
Strube says what’s most important to her though, is that her baby is safe.
“Never leave your car unattended!” Strube said.