1 of 3 | Five-month-old twins Kyair and Kason Thomass were abducted Monday night when a woman stole a car they were in. Photo courtesy of Columbus Division of Police/Facebook
Dec. 21 (UPI) -- Authorities in Ohio are rushing to find a 5-month old baby who's been missing since Monday night when a woman stole a parked car he and his twin brother were in as their mother was picking up a DoorDash order from a Columbus pizzeria.
The twin babies, Kyair and Kason Thomass, were reported abducted at around 9:45 p.m. Monday after a homeless woman, identified as 24-year-old Nalah Tamiko Jackson, stole the 2010 Honda Accord they were sitting in as their mother was picking up food from Donatos Pizza at East First Street and North High Street in Columbus.
Police said Kyair was found earlier Tuesday at Dayton airport, and they are calling on Jackson to safely return his twin brother.
"Nalah Jackson, I plead to you, please return Kason Thomass," Columbus police chief Elaine Bryant said during a press conference. "We thank you for returning Kyair. You've already showed us you can do the right thing.
"You can return him to any safe location: fire department, hospital, shopping center -- any public place where someone will find the baby. We're begging you to please return Kason. We can even pick him up. Just call us and tell us where you are and where Kason is. No questions asked."
Columbus deputy chief Smith Weir told reporters that they are worried about Kason's safety and believe he is in danger.
"This is a cry for help," he said. "We are asking for the community to come forward and to help us find this child."
Employees of Donatos Pizza at East First Street and North High Street told police that Jackson had exited the restaurant as the unidentified mother was entering to pick up a DoorDash order, the Columbus Division of Police said.
The call to police about the stolen car was made at about 9:45 p.m. with officers arriving at the scene minutes later.
Shortly after 10:15 p.m., a grid pattern search executed by some 50 officers began and more than a dozen addresses connected to Jackson as well as three homeless encampments were checked, police said, adding that an amber alert for the missing twins was issued at about 1:37 a.m. Tuesday.
A call then came in at 4:15 concerning a child found abandoned at the airport in Dayton, which police have confirmed is Kyair and that he was safe.
Police in Huber Heights, a city located about 60 miles west of Columbus, told Columbus division that they have surveillance video of Jackson and the stolen vehicle at a gas station where she asked the cashier for money.
Weir said identifying the vehicle was complicated by the fact that it did not have a license plate as the mother had just purchased it. The amber alert states that the Ohio registration tag on the rear bumper is partially damaged.
Authorities said they do not believe the suspect had prior knowledge of the mother or her two babies and that she has been previously arrested several times by Columbus police. Bryant said they are unsure of where Jackson might be, if she was still driving the stolen car or if she was aware the children were in the vehicle when she drove away.
She added it is possible that Kason has been left somewhere and that he has yet to be found.
During the press conference, Bryant also admitted without going into details that there was a "lapse of communication from an executive level" that is "being addressed internally" to ensure it doesn't happen again.
Asked if that means she was not initially aware of the abduction, Bryant said, "I was not."