Masked man accused of snatching a one-year-old boy from his cot in the dead of night is charged as grandfather reveals his horror at finding the child missing
- Amber alert has been issued in Queensland after a boy was taken from a home
- The boy was missing for seven hours before police were able to track him down
- He was found at an address just 14 minutes’ drive from where he was taken
- Detectives have confirmed a 31-year-old man has been charged
A masked man who allegedly broke into a home and snatched a little boy from a cot while his family were asleep has been charged.
An amber alert was issued on Sunday morning after the one-year-old disappeared dead of night from a home in Warrender Street in Darra, Brisbane.
Seven hours after he was taken, the boy was found at an address in nearby Salisbury, a 14-minute drive from where he was taken.
On Sunday evening, a 31-year-old who is known to the family was charged with one count of child stealing and one count of enter dwelling with intent at night.
Police confirmed the boy is ‘safe and well’, but his granddad recalled the gut wrenching moment he awoke at 5am to realise something was amiss.
The little boy was last seen wearing a black shirt and was still in a nappy. He has light brown hair and fair skin
‘The bedroom door was open and it’s normally closed,’ he told The Courier Mail.
The granddad, who cannot be named for legal reasons, said he realised the boy was not in his cot and immediately rushed around the house to try to find him.
‘After we had searched the house we knew there was something wrong and we were straight onto police.’
‘Everyone was asleep and didn’t hear anything. He was asleep. He was taken out of his cot.’
After phoning police, the granddad reviewed the CCTV footage he has around his house and saw the man who snatched the little boy.
He was wearing fingerless gloves, a baseball cap and a face mask, along with ‘distinctive shoes’, police said.
The man allegedly gained entry into the house by climbing over a wooden fence.
It is not yet clear what the man’s motives were for taking the little boy.
‘There’s no way of ourselves being able to identify him,’ he said.
‘I am still shaking at the fact that knowing a total stranger can be in the house with all the kids asleep and my partner asleep.’
Queensland Police said the boy, who is 20 months old, was taken from Warrender Street in Darra about 4am on Sunday
The whole family had gathered at the Darra home after his disappearance, and were together when police called to say they’d found the little boy.
He said ‘it was like fireworks going off’ when they learned of the positive outcome, and thanked police for their swift action.
Officers released CCTV images showing the man allegedly entering the home and picking the boy up before leaving.
In the photos, he held the boy, who had no shoes on and looked sleepy, on his hip.
The little boy was missing for a total of seven hours.
An Amber Alert is issued in the most serious of circumstances relating to missing children, particularly in an abduction case or a high risk missing child case.
The man will face Richlands Magistrates Court on Monday.