VIRGINIA BEACH - A toddler taken during a carjacking in Va. Beach Tuesday morning is safe with her family again.
18-month-old Neomi Hilel was playing happily at her uncle's home, where her family is vacationing from Florida.
Yaron Sibony says he's "grateful to God and the police" for finding the little girl.
It was an agonizing morning for the family.
They'd stopped at the 7-Eleven at 201. S. Witchduck Road around 9:30 a.m. Her mom was at the gas pumps when a man, identified as Matthew Nash, came up to her, punched her in the face and got into the minivan.
Little Neomi was in the back seat.
Eyewitnesses say they heard the woman scream, "No, no, my baby's inside."
Little Neomi was in the back seat.
Witnesses also said the suspect had first approached a group of people standing around a car. They said they thought he targeted the van after realizing the car had broken down and wasn't operating.
Several people in the store parking lot got into their vehicles to pursue the suspect, but they couldn't keep up.
Va. State Police soon issued an Amber Alert, looking for the van with the little girl inside.
"We posted the Amber Alert on over 70 changeable message signs throughout the region. We also posted the Amber Alert on our 511 traffic and travel messaging system," Nora Jump-Scott with VDOT told WVEC.com.
Then, finally, the news the family had been praying for - Neomi was safe.
The Amber Alert was terminated at 12:33 p.m. when she was found at a Newport News hotel.
Two women checking out of Point Plaza Hotel at 950 J. Clyde Morris Blvd. spotted the little girl alone in the parking lot. They took her to the front desk.
The hotel general manager says he initially thought the child belonged to a guest, so employees went room to room asking about her.
Then, they saw the Amber Alert on TV and realized who she was.
13News was there just before 1:00 p.m. when the Hilel family was reunited with Neomi.
Police are reviewing video at the hotel to see if the vehicle or the drop-off was caught on tape.
Meantime, the search continues for Nash, who lives in Norfolk. He's white, has hazel eyes and weighs about 200 pounds.
He was last seen driving a dark colored (green or grey) Odyssey minivan, which has Florida plates and a sticker of a Hebrew symbol. The minivan has a personalized license plate that reads "HASHEM1."
Warrants are on file charging Nash with carjacking and abduction.
13News has learned that Camillus, New York Police have been looking for Nash for "harassment" since January 2009.
According to court records in Va. Beach, Camillus is listed as his home town.
According to Police Chief Tom Winn of the Camillus police department, officers responded to a call on October 18, 2008 for a physical domestic dispute involving Nash and his girlfriend.
When officers attempted to arrest Nash, he jumped out of a window and fled the scene. Officers eventually caught him and arrested him.
When the Camillus police department ran Nash through the Automatic Fingerprint Identification System, they learned of a warrant for Nash in Virginia Beach. They then held Nash until the Virginia Beach police department came and took him into their custody.
Winn says Nash's only connection to the Hampton Roads area is that he came down to the area to sell drugs. Nash kept returning to the area to appear in court.
Winn says Nash has a number of addresses in the Camillus area, which is near Syracuse. Winn says his officers are looking for Nash in that area.
In Virginia Beach, Nash has a 2006 conviction on felony possession of controlled substances with intent and a January, 2009 incident that revoked his sentence/probation.
If you know anything about this case, call Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP.
AMBER ALERT NOTIFICATION:
The Virginia State Police and Virginia Missing Children Clearinghouse have issued an Amber Alert for a child abduction on behalf of the Virginia Beach Police Department on 07/15/2009.
The Virginia Beach Police Department is looking for Naomi Hilel, white, female, age 1 year, height 2 feet 00 inches, weight 20 lbs, with blue eyes and short blonde hair, wearing blue short sleeve shirt, multi-colored stripes long pants.
The child is believed to be in extreme danger and was last seen at 201 S. Witchduck Rd., Virginia Beach, Va.
The child is likely abducted by unknown, white, male, age 25 years old, height 5 feet 10 inches, weight medium lbs, with unknown eyes and long light hair wearing plaid shirt, dark shorts pants, dark tennis shoes, ballcap.
They may be traveling in a 2009 grey-green Honda Odyssey mini-van, license HASHEM1, FLORIDA, north on Newtown Rd.
Please contact the Virginia Beach Police Department at (757) 385-4101 or the Virginia State Police at 1-800-822-4453 (1-800-vachild).
AMBER ALERT TERMINATED:
An Amber Alert has been terminated on 07/15/2009 12:33 PM for Naomi Hilel, which was issued on 07/15/2009 11:45 AM.