A Cicero man is facing charges after allegedly stealing a running vehicle on Monday afternoon with a 1-year-old child inside while her mother was picking up food from a west suburban restaurant.
Edward N. Busse, 33, was charged Wednesday with motor vehicle theft and with endangering the life of a child, according to Cicero town spokesman Ray Hanania.
On Tuesday, police filed charges against the child’s mother, 30-year-old Tania H. Madrigal, who faces one count of endangering the life or health of a child, Hanania said. Madrigal, a resident of East Chicago, Indiana, was also wanted on an outstanding Oak Lawn warrant for driving under the influence.
Madrigal pulled up in front of Al’s Italian Restaurant at 6050 W. Cermak Rd. in Cicero to pick up a pizza, Hanania said. She left her Jeep Cherokee running in one of the diagonal parking spots in front of the restaurant with her 1-year-old baby in the backseat.
When she was inside, Busse got inside of the car and drove off, Hanania said. Minutes later he apparently realized a baby was in the backseat and abandoned the car.
The car was found a few blocks away in an alley, when a neighbor heard what she thought was a baby crying loudly and called 911, Hanania said. The car was recovered and the baby was safe and unharmed.
“I want to thank all of the individuals who stepped forward to help us in this case, and the work of our detectives,” Cicero Police Chief Jerry Chlada Jr. said in a statement.
“We received a lot of help from the public and I am glad that the baby was returned to its mother safe and sound,” Chlada said.