LAKEWOOD, Colo. -- A thief stole a Lakewood family's car at the worst possible time.
The family was getting ready to head to the hospital because their unborn child was getting ready to come into the world. But a thief changed all that.
Codie Rayl is dealing with the pain of labor inside her home at the Lamar Station Apartments at 1425 Kendall St. in Lakewood.
Rayl is also dealing with the pain of being stuck at home without a car.
"We packed the bags and put them in the car and my other half came back in to get me. And just as quickly as he came in, we looked out the window and the car was gone -- flying in reverse, taking off down the street with all my kids’ stuff in it," Rayl said.
She says her fiance, Cody Dye, chased after the car, grabbing onto the door handle -- but got flung across the street. He was not hurt.
"He was screaming, ‘My girlfriend is in labor. We're going to hospital right now. I need my car.’ And the guy took off," Rayl said.
An ambulance took them to Swedish Medical Center. On their way to the hospital, they saw their car at a gas station at West Hampden Avenue and Sheridan Boulevard.
But it was gone when police got there.
“(The doctor) did not want to push for labor until I'm at least 39 weeks. So they sent us home. They paid for a cab to send us home because, in fact, we had no car,” Rayl said.
The Lakewood Police Department said the family's case illustrates why to never leave a car running.
"Unfortunately, the thief has no idea what your plans are. And this is a good example. They really needed their vehicle. It was crucial their vehicle be there when she got ready to go into labor," spokesman Steve Davis said.
"It's not a good feeling on top of trying to manage contractions and him and everything else," Rayl said.
The theft compounds the stress of labor and looking after a 2-year-old whose high energy gives birth to other frustrations.
She said she’d love to get her son out of the house, but with no car and a baby due anytime, it’s not possible. Doctors said their baby Grace could arrive in six hours or six days.
She just hopes she gets her car back before then.
"Even if it was completely empty and we had to buy everything again. Just having the car would be amazing," Rayl said.
Police said the vehicle is a silver blue, 2006 Chrysler 300 with Colorado plates 631-TQQ.