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Moment father realizes his car has been stolen with his 2-year-old son in the back seat
Featured Image Credit: 9News

Moment father realizes his car has been stolen with his 2-year-old son in the back seat

The father had just stepped away from the car to get an ice cream for his son

A father experienced his 'worst nightmare' when he realised his car had been stolen while his two-year-old son was asleep in the back.

The dad had just driven to the shops with his son in his grey Volkswagen Tiguan when the incident took place at around 3:45pm local time in Victoria, Australia on Sunday (8 January).

He arrived at the shop and wanted to buy some ice creams, but decided not to wake up his son who was sleeping peacefully in the back. See what happened next below:

The dad left the car running so his son would be able to stay in the air conditioning and nipped out to do his shopping, all the while remaining about 30 metres away from the car. It was at that moment that another man got in the car and drove away.

Police believe a man had been 'observing' the vehicle before climbing in, but that he didn't know the child was inside when he went to rob it.

In a statement about the incident, Detective Acting Senior Sergeant Grant Lewis explained: “(He has) stolen that vehicle, driven about 350m through the rear of the Chelsea shops before he’s obviously realised there’s a child in the vehicle."

The dad was buying an ice cream for himself and his son when the car was stolen.

When the dad realised what had happened, he ran to a kebab shop near where the car had been parked to try and get help.

Recalling the situation to 9NEWS, employee Christopher Hall said: “This guy just rushed into the store, he seemed visibly panicked, stressed, he was on the phone."

Thankfully, the man who stole the car did stop when he realised the two-year-old was in the back, but he didn't turn back.

Lewis explained: “He’s then stopped the car, put the child on the side of the road ... and driven off erratically southbound on Nepean Hwy towards Frankston."

The little boy was rescued by members of the public who spotted him on the side of the busy road and pulled over to call police.

He wasn't injured, but was 'clearly traumatised and upset', and police have pointed out how lucky it was that he didn't move before being rescued.

The young boy was found abandoned at the side of the road.

“He remained where he was, but he was very distraught,” Lewis said. “A 30°C day with lots of cars and lots of traffic. You’d hate to think what could have happened”.

The acting senior sergeant has explained authorities will not be pursuing charges against the father for leaving the baby in the car by himself.

Lewis did describe the matter as 'serious', however, adding: "We don’t want to victim shame or victim blame, but clearly in future, we’ve got to be mindful ... We need to secure our vehicle and keep our kids safe,” he said.

The dad described the incident as 'horrifying', and warned others never to make the same mistake as him.

Police have not yet caught the man who stole the car.