HOUSTON - A Houston couple is facing child abandonment charges after investigators said they left their children inside a running car that was later stolen.
An arrest warrant has been issued for Kijana Parker and Naishon Jones, both 27.
The incident happened Feb. 24 as the pair stopped to get food from Chinese Seafood Plus in the 6700 block of Chimney Rock Road.
According to investigators, the couple's 2-year-old and 6-year-old sons were asleep when they got to the restaurant at 7 p.m., so they decided to leave the children inside the running car.
Surveillance cameras captured the couple placing their order, talking to each other and spending time on their cellphones.
After being inside for 17 minutes, Jones can be seen going outside and coming back five minutes later.
About 7:30 p.m. when the couple got their order, Parker went to the door, looked outside and saw that their red Jeep was not in the parking lot, according to investigators.
"My children! My children! I want my children! My children are in the car," said the frantic mother, according to server Cynthia Flores.
Surveillance video outside the restaurant shows a man walking up to the couple's unlocked vehicle and driving away. It is not clear whether he knew there were children inside.
After a 10-minute search, Bellaire police found the Jeep less than a mile away in the parking lot of a charter school in the 5600 block of Gulfton Street. The man had abandoned the vehicle, and the children were still inside.
According to court documents Child Protective Services already had two active cases on the couple.
There was also a temporary protective order against Jones because of a family violence incident that happened on Feb. 8. He was not supposed to have been anywhere near Parker or the children, according to the order.
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