Authorities on Thursday were searching for a Washington state man seen on video holding up a convenience store as his young daughter watches and telling the clerk he is unemployed and needs money to support the girl.
The Kittitas County sheriff's office said Robert Daniel Webb robbed the store Tuesday in Ellensburg, 95 miles southeast of Seattle.
Webb was on the run but the girl, 9, was taken into protective custody Wednesday night in Fortuna, Calif., NBC affiliate KING-TV quoted police as saying.
The father of a sheriff's deputy in Fortuna, who happened to be an acquaintance of the suspect, was asked to watch the girl Wednesday night while her father ran errands, KING-TV reported.
Later that evening, the man learned Webb was wanted by police in Ellensburg. The man contacted his son and Fortuna police, who took the girl into protective custody until her mother could arrive.
Webb managed to elude authorities after a car chase.
The man in the store surveillance video points a gun at the clerk and says: "Open the till and got me what you have. ... I'm out of work. My daughter's got to survive."
The sheriff's office said the man made off with about $200.