- A 30-year-old man was arrested in connection with the kidnapping of a 16-month old baby boy in Heidelberg on Wednesday.
- The infant was found unharmed in a concealed compartment in a shack.
- Police say the toddler sustained minor bruises to his body.
A 30-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the kidnapping of a 16-month-old baby boy in Heidelberg in the Western Cape.
Police said the child was snatched on Monday morning, following a domestic dispute between his mother and her ex- boyfriend at their home in Dollo Squire.
According to police, the suspect allegedly threatened the 17-year-old mother before fleeing with the child into the bushes.
The boy's mother alerted the police who deployed a search party.
Southern Cape police spokesperson, Captain Malcolm Pojie said police negotiators were constantly in contact with the suspect telephonically, trying to convince him to surrender throughout Tuesday, up until the early morning hours.
Pojie said the Heidelberg police station received information early on Wednesday about the whereabouts of the suspect.
"Police pounced on the suspect in a shack in Dollo Squire where he was hiding, with the baby boy, in a concealed compartment in the shack. He was subsequently arrested on the spot and the baby was taken to the local hospital for medical treatment," said Pojie
The toddler sustained minor bruises to his feet and body.
A trained police search and rescue dog from the K9 unit, had joined the search earlier, along with investigators from the Family Violence, Sexual Offences and Child Protection Unit, Crime Intelligence and EMS search and rescue teams.
An EMS helicopter as well as privately operated drones scanned the area in search of the pair.
Eden Cluster Commander Major-General Oswald Reddy who visited the scene, praised police and other roleplayers involved.
The suspect is scheduled to appear in the Heidelberg Magistrate's Court on Friday on a charge of kidnapping.
"The possibility that more charges might be added, is not excluded," said Pojie.