Father chases down carjacking suspect to rescue kids, police say

MINNEAPOLIS — A father is credited with saving his young children who were inside his vehicle when it was stolen.

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The Minneapolis Police Department told KARE a suspect driving a stolen vehicle stole a second vehicle, which was occupied by four children under age 5.

Police said the car was stolen at approximately 8:40 p.m. Wednesday, and that the father of the children was nearby when it happened, KMSP reported.

Deanah Gotchie, the children’s mother, told KSTP she was dropping of items at a friend’s house when her husband, Derek, stepped out of their car to close the back door.

“I turn around, and I’m like, ‘What?,’” Deanah Gotchie told KSTP. “I look out the door and I see our taillights leaving.”

Derek immediately jumped into the stolen vehicle left behind by the suspect and used it to chase down his car, rear-ending it with his children inside, police told KMSP.

“I didn’t know what to do,” Derek Gotchie told KSTP. “I just hit the back of my truck and pushed him into this alleyway to pin him against this fence.”

After the vehicle was rear-ended, the suspect got out of the car and ran away, KARE reported.

There were no injuries reported and the crash occurred at a low speed. One of the Gotchies’ children told KSTP that he asked the suspect to slow down during the pursuit.

Police responded and processed evidence from the scene, but did not say whether any arrests had been made, KMSP reported.

“I asked (the officer), ‘Did you find them?,’” Deanah Gotchie told KSTP. “He was like, ‘Your husband did.’ I’m like, ‘What are you talking about my husband did?’ I got there, and I hear the story, I’m not surprised at all. I’m like, ‘Yup, that sounds like my husband.’”

The family has started a GoFundMe campaign to help cover the costs of repairing their car.

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