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Sand Springs car stolen Monday morning with two children inside; push-to-start feature stops robber

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Posted at 4:59 PM, Jul 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-25 18:09:23-04

SAND SPRINGS, Okla. -- A Sand Springs mother is warning others about the dangers of leaving kids in a running car.

In a matter of seconds, a man took off in her car with her two young sons in the back seat.

“All I could do in that moment is cry...pray...” said Sand Springs mother Tiffani Pearson.

For Pearson, words can't describe how she felt when she saw a man speed off in her car early this morning with her 6-year-old and 4-year-old inside.

“My mind was thinking, 'oh my goodness the lake is right there, he could easily lose control and easily go in there,'” she said.

Her son, Jeremiah, instantly knew something was wrong.

“I felt like he was trying to steal, like, us. Like me and Bubba and then he just stole everything else,” he said.

Pearson says she got lucky. Her car has a push-to start feature that can be used if an accompanying fob is nearby.

When the man sped off, she prayed the car would shut down once it left the radius of this device.

About a quarter of a mile away, her prayers were answered. “He didn't choose to stop. The car was still in drive when it turned off. So that's how I know the car stopped him, and not him,” she said.

By the time police arrived, the suspect was gone. Now officers are warning folks to check their surroundings and err on the side of caution.

“If leaving them in the car for a few seconds is going to jeopardize their safety, then don't do it,” said Sand Springs Captain Todd Enzbrenner.

It made a lasting impression for Pearson as she tries to teach her children right from wrong.

But for Jeremiah, the lasting impression came from those who ran to his side. “'Why do you want to be a police officer?' 'Because they help people.”

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