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Who took baby Blaise? Police look for clues as family celebrates 1-year-old's safe return

One-year-old Blaise Barnett was found safe 39 hours after being reported missing. Now police need help identifying who's responsible.

CLARKSTON, Ga. — Thursday night was a night of celebration -- for a family and for an entire community.

One-year-old Blaise Barnett was reunited with his parents in Clarkston, Ga., after someone stole the family’s vehicle with Blaise inside of it early Wednesday.

A massive search had not turned up any clues. But Thursday afternoon, a woman who lives less than a mile from the family found Blaise safe, inside her car. Authorities said it's unclear how long the baby had been in that car.

Family video posted on Instagram showed the celebration, the laughter and tears and prayers of thanks, as Blaise was returned to his parents’ tight embrace.

“I’m feeling great, guys! Speechless!” His mother, Deonna Bray, told reporters

Bray went with Blaise to Children’s Health Care of Atlanta for a medical evaluation. In the photos the family posted on Instagram, Blaise appeared to be just fine.

Surveillance video from a business across the street from the parents’ apartment showed the moment Blaise vanished early Wednesday morning.

First, you can see the parents’ SUV pulling up to their driveway. Blaise was with the parents, in the back seat, in his car seat.

According to police, someone jumped into the parents’ SUV a few minutes later, just seconds before they were able to get Blaise out of his car seat. The video showed the car thief driving away with Blaise.

Authorities said someone later ditched the SUV a couple of miles away, but Blaise was still missing.

RELATED: Missing 1-year-old Blaise Barnett | Timeline, what we know

In an interview with 11Alive, the woman who found Blaise inside her car parked in her driveway said that she was about to go on an errand. She said she hadn’t driven her car since the day before, and when she opened the car door, there was Blaise, in his car seat.

Police said they believe someone randomly chose her parked car as the place to leave Blaise, so he would be found.

The woman called police, who whisked Blaise away to his parents’ embrace.

“He’s safe, now,” Bray said. “He’s home. That’s all I wanted. He’s home. Thank you! Thank you!”

The GBI is processing the family’s SUV, as well as the car in which Blaise was found, looking for evidence such as fingerprints that might point them to the person or persons responsible. Investigators are asking anyone who has information to call Clarkston Police at 404-557-8956.


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