Video: Couple stumbles upon abducted toddler

updated 1/4/2009 4:29:52 PM ET 2009-01-04T21:29:52

Authorities were searching for the gunman who killed a woman at her home and then abandoned her 4-year-old son at a highway rest stop.

A Maryland couple found the boy on Friday, wandering around a rest area along Interstate 70 in central Ohio.

The travelers, Mike and Judith McConnell, said Sunday on NBC television's "Today" that the boy told them a strange man had entered his home in Dayton without knocking and shot his mother.

Police later found the boy's mother, Jennifer Nelson, 29, dead in her home.

Boy able to provide details
The McConnells, who took the child into their warm vehicle and contacted authorities, said the boy was able to provide clear details about his home address and parents' names.

"I began asking him questions, and he told me that a stranger had come into his house without knocking," Mike McConnell said via satellite from Baltimore. "And I said 'Well, where was your mommy?' And he said 'He shot my mommy.'"

Two computers were stolen from the home.

Vickie Nelson, the boy's grandmother and Jennifer Nelson's mother-in-law, said her son's car had been stolen in Columbus about a week and a half before Christmas. She said she believed the person who stole the car obtained personal information about where the Nelsons live.

Authorities said they found the stolen car near the home and that they were searching for a car belonging to Jennifer Nelson's mother, which they believe was the getaway vehicle.

Dayton is about 75 miles (120 kilometers) southwest of Columbus.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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