By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A 45-year-old Twin Cities man is facing kidnapping charges after he stole a car left running Thursday with a 3-year-old child inside.

Tyler Moore, of Minneapolis, is charged with one count of kidnapping to facilitate a felony or flight and one count of auto theft, court documents filed in Hennepin County show. If convicted of the kidnapping charge alone, he could face up to 40 years in prison.

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According to a criminal complaint, Moore stole a vehicle left running late Thursday morning outside the Speedway Gas station on the 3300 block of University Avenue Southeast. The driver told police that she left the car go get milk for her kids. She said that she left her 3-year-old child in the car because of the extreme cold.

The mother said that she locked every door but the driver’s. When she returned from the gas station, her car was gone.

Shortly after stealing the vehicle, Moore crashed it into the back wall of an apartment building, the complaint states. He then opened the back hatch and began changing clothes, in what investigators believe was an attempt to change his appearance.

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After changing, Moore drove to a Fresh Thyme Market, where a witness told police that he stole a bottle of alcohol. Moore returned to the vehicle and drove off.

Less than 10 minutes after the initial car theft, police found the stolen vehicle on the 20 block of 30th Avenue Southeast. Investigators say it had crashed into two cars. The 3-year-old child was found unharmed inside, but Moore was gone, the complaint states.

Officers later arrested Moore when he returned to the Speedway gas station. Before being interviewed by police, Moore told investigators that he “did not take that lady’s kid,” the complaint states. At that time, Moore had not been told what he was arrested for.

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While in the interview room, Moore removed the thermostat with a hidden recording device inside, damaging the wall, the complaint states. Moore remains in custody.