Mother thanks woman who helped after child abducted - WSMV Channel 4

Mother thanks woman who helped after child abducted

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NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

A Nashville mother hopes her near-tragedy will get other parents to think twice.

Farrah Reffegee left her son in the back of her car while she went to pick up another child on Bentfield Drive last month.

Police said she left the keys in the car, and two people then stole the vehicle with the 5-year-old inside.

The car showed up that evening at a truck stop. The child was still there, too, and was fortunately unharmed.

Now, Reffegee, after a lesson well-learned, is teaming up with police to remind parents who leave the car running as they run a quick errand that not only is this against the law, it is also an awful way to lose their child.

"I felt lifeless, like a nightmare. I couldn't believe this was happening. I was blaming myself, literally making myself sick," Reffegee said.

Today, 5-year-old Tahj and his mother were all smiles and hugs, thanking the couple who helped the child as he walked around a truck stop on Old Hickory Boulevard.

He had been missing for three long hours before walking up to Toni Lutrick.

"You don't do this for recognition. I thank God he put me in the right place at the right time," Lutrick said.

Reffegee was picking up her 10-month-old child from her aunt's in-home daycare on Bentley Drive. The car was left running, and Tahj was peacefully sleeping in the back seat. Then, it happened.

"To see your car running down the street, and you're running as fast as your legs will allow you to run, waving your arms, saying 'bring my baby back,'" Reffegee said.

Metro police used Monday's joyful reunion as an opportunity to remind people about the Park Smart campaign.

"Cases happen where it is much worse than this, so we're very fortunate that Tahj was found safe," said Det. Shaun Rohweder, with Metro Police Youth Services.

Tahj told police the carjackers pulled into the truck stop and told him to stay put inside the car until his mom came for him.

He waited for about an hour before leaving the car and walking over to the Lutricks.

Police are still looking for the abductors. If you have information that could help investigators, call 74-CRIME.

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