Arrests made after pair makes off with baby in a stolen car
Police arrested a man and woman Thursday morning on suspicion of stealing an idling Jeep Cherokee in front of Barton Memorial Hospital with a 1-year-old baby inside, a South Lake Tahoe police officer stated Tuesday.
Johnathan Michael Doyle, 19, and Theresa Kloefkorn, 47, were arrested on suspicion of kidnapping, child endangerment and stealing a vehicle. Doyle remains in El Dorado County Jail under $87,500 bail.
At 1:25 a.m. Thursday, an unidentified man drove the gray 2000 Cherokee to Barton to get care for his unconscious wife. Police said the man left the motor running while he carried her into the hospital to hospital staff.
“The man’s vehicle and child were left unattended for approximately one minute,” according to a statement by police Sgt. Brad Williams. “When the man returned to get his baby, he saw that his vehicle was gone.”
Authorities said the man frantically told Barton staff someone stole his car with the child inside, prompting several nurses to run outside. At least two jumped into their cars and searched the area, police said.
Authorities from the police department, El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department, Alpine County Sheriff’s Department and California Highway Patrol established checkpoints around the Lake Tahoe Basin.
One of the nurses spotted the Cherokee driving on Highway 50 near the “Y” and — since he did not have a cell phone — the nurse began honking his horn and followed the stolen car to ty to get it to stop, Williams stated. When the Cherokee stopped at a traffic light, the nurse hopped out and pulled the keys from the Cherokee’s ignition and grabbed the baby who was “crying in an unsecured child restraint seat,” Williams stated.
Doyle was also charged with suspicion of drunken driving.
Police Lt. Marty Hale said the baby did not appear to be harmed; he did not know the wife’s condition.