Kent man faces kidnapping charge after child found in stolen car

Reportedly took vehicle from 7-Eleven store after boy’s mother went inside to pay for gas

A 31-year-old Kent man faces second-degree kidnapping and theft of a motor vehicle charges after he allegedly took a car with a 2-year-old boy inside.

King County prosecutors filed charges Jan. 17 against Cameron T. Comstock for a Jan. 8 incident that started at the 7-Eleven store and gas station at the southwest corner of Central Avenue South and Willis Street. Comstock remained Jan. 17 in the King County Correctional Facility in Seattle with bail set at $200,000, according to jail records.

Comstock’s arraignment is set for 9 a.m. Jan. 30 at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

“While the defendant has limited criminal history, the state requests bail because the defendant is a danger to the safety of the community,” wrote Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Stephen Herschkowitz in charging papers. “In this probable cause referral, the defendant got into a car with a small toddler inside while the child’s mother went inside a convenience store. …the defendant stole the victim’s vehicle with the child secured inside and eventually abandoned the vehicle and the child at a hotel in Kent.”

The boy’s mother told Kent Police she stopped to get gas and left the boy asleep inside the car when she went inside to pay. She also was approached by a man who asked her for money, according to court documents. She offered the man $5 to watch her car while she went inside.

When the mother came out of the store, the vehicle was gone. She asked the man where her car had gone, and he said her boyfriend took it. She told the man she didn’t have a boyfriend. She told police she had left her keys inside the car.

Police found the car and the boy about an hour later and less than a mile from the 7-Eleven at the Red Lion Inn parking lot, 25100 74th Ave. S., directly west of the store. The boy was unharmed. The driver had fled the scene.

Detectives collected video surveillance footage from the 7-Eleven and the hotel as well as witness reports to help identify Comstock, according to charging documents. Comstock showed up in police databases because of several prior contacts with law enforcement, including a warrant arrest by Tukwila Police on Dec. 15, 2022.

At about 1:16 p.m. Jan. 12, a Kent officer spotted Comstock walking in the 900 block of West James Street. He looked to be wearing the same hat and shoes as seen in the surveillance video footage. Numerous officers responded and took Comstock into custody without incident.

Detectives tried to interview Comstock at the Kent Police Department, but he requested an attorney be present so no questions were asked, according to court documents.

Detectives went to a Kent address where Comstock has occasionally lived with his mother. Detectives showed the mother photos of the video footage from the 7-Eleven and asked if she recognized any of the clothing. The mother brought out what appeared to be the same headphones, jacket, T-shirt, sweatshirt, jeans and belt as seen in the video footage, according to charging papers.

Police were granted a search warrant by a judge to obtain DNA samples from the clothing, car and to track cellphone location records. Detectives took swabs from inside Comstock’s mouth at the city jail to compare with DNA samples found inside the vehicle taken from the 7-Eleven.

According to King County jail records, Comstock was booked and released four times in 2022. He is awaiting trial on charges of possession of a stolen vehicle, theft of a motor vehicle and negligent driving.

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