OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) — The search for the man accused of kidnapping a child is now over. Police have arrested the man they say stole a car with a child inside on Wednesday afternoon. Neighbors who spoke with KFOR on Thursday said this is something they never expected, but they’re relieved to hear the suspect has been caught.
Oklahoma City officers found the two-year-old boy a few hours later, nearly 20 miles away from the scene of the kidnapping at an apartment complex.
Oklahoma City Police said 29-year-old Ryan Winkler allegedly stole a car from the family’s driveway with their 2-year-old son inside. Neighbors said they have never had issues like this in the area and are now concerned for their safety.
Less than 24 hours after a kidnapping in broad daylight, police arrested Winkler not far from where the child was found on Wednesday.
Around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, Oklahoma City Police responded near NW 50th and Harvey Parkway after someone stole a car with a child inside. Immediately an Amber Alert was issued, and hours later, 2-year-old Ryland Penner was found safe near an apartment complex in southwestern Oklahoma City.
That news was comforting to neighbors.
“I’m extremely relieved to know that they found out who did it,” said Meredith Harrison, neighbor.
Neighbors told KFOR they have never had issues like this in the area and are now concerned for their safety.
“It’s tough. We’re going to probably be keeping on our guard for sure the next few weeks,” said neighbor Scott Abney.
Abney lives across the street from the Penner family and said he saw the mother and son outside their home on Thursday morning.
“It seems like they were just trying to kind of pick up the pieces and kind of just move forward… My heart really goes out to that family and, you know, everything that they’ve been through,” said Abney.
Those in the area are now comforting the family.
“I definitely would like to go give her a hug just to say, ‘hey, we are all so grateful that this turned out the way it did,’” said Harrison.
Winkler has been booked into the Oklahoma County Jail. He is facing Kidnapping, Child Neglect and Automobile Larceny charges.