A 63-year-old woman with dementia was safely located on Saturday afternoon, June 4, several hours after she was abducted when a male suspect stole the vehicle she was sitting in, Winnipeg Police said.
In a press release, police said the victim, Sandra McLaughlin, was sitting inside a blue 2012 Jeep Patriot with a Manitoba license plate KXR 852 when an individual approached the vehicle, entered through the passenger’s side door, got behind the wheel, and drove off.
Security footage released by police captured the moment the Jeep was stolen, as well as another person approaching the vehicle and trying to open the driver’s side door as the suspect drove the Jeep out of the parking lot.
The incident prompted Winnipeg Police to issue a “silver alert,” which it said is “activated when a vulnerable adult person is reported as missing.” Descriptions of both McLaughlin and the suspect were released, along with security footage showing the moment the vehicle was stolen.
In a 10:30 am media briefing, Constable Jay Murray urged the suspect to drop McLaughlin off safely, suggesting a fire station or police station. “Our primary goal is her safe return. Everything else second to that,” Murray said.
Shortly before 12:30 pm, the Winnipeg Police Department announced that McLaughlin had been “safely located,” and thanked the “public, media outlets and partner agencies for the attention and assistance.”
Police said officers found the stolen Jeep abandoned in the city’s Glendale neighborhood at 11:50 am, with Sandra “alone and physically unharmed inside the vehicle.” Credit: Winnipeg Police via Storyful