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Toddler Taken During SUV Carjacking Found Safe

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Daniel Rivero (Source: Hialeah Police)

Daniel Rivero (Source: Hialeah Police)

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South Florida Crime

HIALEAH (CBSMiami) – A toddler who was taken when his parent’s SUV was carjacked in Hialeah has been found safe and sound but his kidnapper is still on the loose.

Hialeah police spokesman Eddie Rodriguez confirmed that 3-year old Daniel Rivero was dropped off in front of a TD Bank at NW 57th Avenue and 7th Street. The SUV and driver, Pedro Luis Valdes, 48, are still missing.

In addition to the carjacking, the FBI said Valdes is wanted for two armed bank robberies, one at the Regions Bank, 8373 West Flagler Street on July 13 at 11:50 a.m. and the other occurring Wednesday at the Bank of America at 7760 West Flagler Street at 2:15 p.m.

The FBI confirmed that Valdes is considered armed and dangerous.

“Here’s a suspect who robbed a bank on Friday and then came to our city today and was involved in a carjacking and then he drops the child off at a bank he did not rob and then robs another bank,” said Rodriguez. “That’s amazing. It shows you can never leave your child alone in a car ever, no matter how short a time.

“Hialeah Police did a great job and because of the response, I think the child was found very quickly,” said Rodriguez.  “This was every parent’s worst nightmare.”

The little boy was in his parent’s silver Mitsubishi Montero in the area of NW 58th Street and NW 37th Avenue when they stopped to buy ice cream from a truck vendor

pedro valdes Toddler Taken During SUV Carjacking Found Safe

Pedro Luis Valdes is wanted by the FBI for two recent bank robberies and a carjacking involving a 3 year old child. The child was returned safely to his parents (Source: FBI)

That vendor, Rafael Gomero, told CBS4′s Peter D’Oench, “I feel bad about what happened. I am glad he is back with his parents. I saw him in the police station and he is ok.”

Gomero said it all happened too quickly and he was not able to stop the carjacker.

But Vincente Rivero, the boy’s uncle, told D’Oench that Rivero’s father tried to stop the carjacking.

“He fought back but the guy took off in the car,” said Rivero. “I feel bad about what happened but now I feel good that the boy is ok. But I feel terrible about what happened. The car is nothing. The boy is the problem.”

It all unfolded at 1:50 p.m.

When Rivero’s father got out of his car, police say  a man jumped in, hit the gas and sped off with the young Rivero in a rear passenger seat when it stolen.

Chopper 4 over the scene spotted child’s father in a white and green striped polo shirt having his hand bandaged by paramedics. His wife, who was visibly shaken, was seated in a chair talking with investigators.

Police are still searching for the Montero which has the license tag number of T30 6JD. It has tinted windows and a handicapped decal on it.

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