Deputies arrested an Oxnard man Friday night on suspicion of kidnapping after he allegedly stole a vehicle with an 18-month-old girl inside, authorities said Saturday.
Jahwi Angeles-Ortega, 33, has multiple outstanding arrest warrants and is currently being held on $122,500 bail, according to the Ventura County Sheriff’s Department. Authorities said he could face vehicle theft and felony kidnapping charges. He is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday.
The baby inside the vehicle he allegedly stole was found unharmed and reunited with her parents, sheriff’s officials said.
On Friday, deputies in Moorpark responded to several calls around 8:23 p.m. about a possible prowler, a man jumping over fences into the backyards of homes in the area of Mountain Trail Street, near Country Trail Park, according to sheriff’s officials.
While looking for the prowler, they received a call at 9:19 p.m. about a vehicle reported to California Highway Patrol as stolen from the 4200 block of Santa Rosa Drive, officials said. Investigators believed the prowler and whoever who stole the vehicle were likely the same person.
The woman whose vehicle was stolen told detectives that her child, an infant, was inside the vehicle at the time, officials said. Her vehicle was stolen from an unincorporated area of Moorpark known as Home Acres.
Ventura County sheriff’s deputies from stations in Moorpark, Camarillo, Thousand Oaks and Fillmore all assisted in the search along with a sheriff’s helicopter. A Camarillo deputy eventually found the stolen vehicle in the 7300 block of Santa Rosa Road and pulled it over in a traffic stop.
Angeles-Ortega was behind the wheel of the vehicle, and he was taken into custody, authorities said.
Meanwhile, deputies found the baby unharmed in the rear seat of the vehicle and returned her to her parents, sheriff’s officials said.