A US father instinctively risked his life to save a child who was caught in the middle of a hijacking which appeared to have gone wrong.
Ernaldo Varela noticed commotion on the streets and asked a bystander what was happening. When he heard that a man had hijacked a car with a baby inside, his paternal instinct kicked in and he immediately took action, chasing down the vehicle, Briefly.co.za found.
The vehicle belonged to an elderly man who was out with his 2-year-old granddaughter. The man was approached by a woman, Cynthia Gracia, 25, who asked him for money, reported Liftable.
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At that moment, Gracia’s boyfriend, Joe Velazquez, 26, jumped into the car and drove off with the young child. He abandoned the vehicle a few streets away.
In hot pursuit, Valera caught up to Velazquez, who swung a knife at him, cutting his hand. Varela managed to hold the suspect down until the police arrived on scene.
Velazquez and Gracia were both arrested and are facing charges of kidnapping and aggravated assault.
While Velazquez was making a run for it, Gracia had hidden in a home nearby. A 14-year-old who lived in the house caught her and pinned her to the floor until police arrived.
Valera needed seven stitches in his fingers.
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