MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A Memphis mother is scared to death after a man stole her car with her disabled daughter sitting inside.
Roselena Allen said Sunday she took the keys but left her 2019 Jeep SUV running to go inside this liquor store on Chelsea. Minutes later, she discovered her SUV was missing with her 17-year-old daughter, who is deaf and legally blind, sitting in the passenger seat.
“When I looked back, I said, ‘Hold on now.’ My truck was in front of the door. The door was wide open,” Allen said. “I said my baby been taken and my truck.”
Investigators said surveillance video shows 21-year-old Terry Jones taking the car. Allen said he released her daughter unharmed shortly after taking off. A friend of hers driving by found the teen at Chelsea and Decatur.
“When he pulled up with her, she was crying. I opened the door. She just jumped out squeezing me, hugging me real, real tight, and I was squeezing her the same way,” Allen said.
She said her daughter was able to use sign language to share what happened.
“He unbuckled her seatbelt and like told her to get out, and I guess where she got out she started running,” Allen said.
Less than two hours later, while still outside the liquor store, she said Jones drove by in her vehicle. Family members followed him to the area of Dorian and Nicholas, where they detained him until police arrived.
Jones was taken to the hospital for minor injuries, but police have not said how he was injured.
“He said he was trying to bring the car back. He said, ‘I don’t have nothing. I don’t have nobody,'” Allen recalled. “He said God told him to do it, so I knew something was wrong with him when he said that.”
She told Jones she wants him to get help and understands mental illness may be a factor.
“You stated God told you to do that, and God will never tell you to take nothing from no one. If anything, it was the devil,” Allen said.
Allen was cited for leaving her vehicle unattended.
Jones is charged with kidnapping and theft of property. He is being held on a $45,000 bond.