kidnapped baby ahsir simmons

A 7-week-old baby boy who was kidnapped from a Pennsylvania mall was found safe Thursday night.

Little Ahsir Simmons was reunited with his family after police received a tip that the kidnapper was showing off the baby to strangers.

“We were able to go to a number of locations tonight in both Upper Merion Township, Malvern and eventually into Tredyffrin Township, Chester County, where we did locate the woman, who was seen on video leaving with the baby,” said Upper Merion Township Police Chief Tom Nolan. “The baby is safe and sound, but is getting checked.”

kidnapped baby ahsir simmons

Police say the stranger befriended Ahsir’s mother, Malika Turner, at the King of Prussia shopping mall in Upper Merion Township at 5:30 p.m. Thursday. The woman took interest in the baby and asked Turner if she could hold him.

Turner told police she turned her back to use her cellphone and to tend to her other children, when the woman walked off with Ahsir.

Surveillance footage from the mall shows the woman calmly carrying Ahsir out of the mall.

An Amber Alert was issued for the child at 9:30 p.m. — after authorities were convinced that the kidnapping was really a stranger abduction.

The King of Prussia mall was also dubious about the kidnapping. Shoppers blamed the mall for not alerting them about the kidnapping.

“They didn’t make an announcement. They didn’t do anything, they didn’t say anything,” said Camrah Carter of Camden, New Jersey.

Social media users complained that an Amber Alert would have been issued immediately for a white baby. Users also criticized the mall for the poor quality of its surveillance system that made identifying the kidnapped nearly impossible.

The King of Prussia mall released a statement after the baby was found last night. The statement reads, in part:

“The King of Prussia Mall is a safe and family friendly environment and we maintain state-of the-art security protocols. The safety of our customers is of utmost priority and we are happy to help reunite Ahsir with his family.”

kidnapped baby ahsir simmons

After the family was reunited with the stolen baby at a hospital, Turner tearfully thanked the police and the public for their help finding her son. But she didn’t thank the King of Prussia Mall.

“I would like to thank God for allowing my baby to come back. And, I want to thank the Upper Merion Police Department, and everybody on social media that helped me get my baby back. I want to thank you so much.”

The baby’s grandfather, Burdette Lewis, addressed the kidnapper directly.

“You have a problem. Lady may have a mental problem,” he told ABC6 Action News. “She might have had a child, and lost her child. It is something wrong.”

Thanks to loyal reader Doesn’tTalkToStrangers for the tip.