Layton mom recounts terrifying ordeal after man carjacks vehicle with young kids inside

Posted at 7:23 AM, Jan 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-16 09:23:54-05

LAYTON, Utah -- A Layton mom is recounting the moment she was carjacked and watched as a fugitive drove off with her two young children in the vehicle.

The kids are safe, ditched by the suspect minutes after the carjacking, and the suspect was caught a day later after a car chase and crash in West Valley City.

On Sunday, Amber Pollard spent the afternoon in her apartment with her 7-month old baby, Julian. She laughed as little Julian made faces and noises in her lap.

Pollard is a proud mom to him and her 3-year old son, Brayden.

“My kids are my world and I'll do anything that I can for them,” she said.

That became crystal clear on Friday, when Layton Police said 26-year old Tyler Williams—on the run from an officer—rushed up to Pollard and her boyfriend as they loaded the car, and tried to take off in it.

“He was wrestling with my boyfriend, pushing him out of the way,” she recounted. “He gets in the car and he's all, ‘Cops! Cops! Cops!’ Slams the door, the door locks.”

Pollard said she pleaded with the suspect from the backseat, where she was trying to save her sons.

“I told the guy, I said, ‘Look, please let me get my kids out of the car, please just stop. Let me get the kids.’”

That’s when surveillance cameras caught the car backing up, nearly pinning Pollard and running her over.

“He just put the car in reverse, I had the door open," she said. "He just booked it backwards, and… the door slammed off me and I fell and I rolled on the ground. [I] got up, and then I started chasing after the car. The door was still open.”

Pollard, her boyfriend, and a Layton Police officer watched as the car disappeared, with Brayden and Julian inside.

“I was screaming, ‘My kids! My kids!’” Pollard said. “At that time, I didn't care about my car or anything else. I thought I literally lost my kids.”

The terror turned to relief a few minutes later, when Layton Police said Williams ditched the two kids in a parking lot and took off. They said he then led police on a chase that they terminated for safety reasons, while the family quickly reunited.

“It was so great, cries of joy,” Pollard said.

Williams continued his alleged crime spree the next day, when West Valley City Police said he started a police chase in a stolen truck, tried to run over an officer and attempted to drive into three patrol cars. He ultimately crashed into a car with a mom and her two kids inside it. There were no major injuries associated with that crash.

Layton Police said Williams also started a different car chase in the Salt Lake City area earlier that day.

“It is a relief for us to have someone that would act so dangerously to be held accountable to his actions,” Layton Police Sergeant Kyle Schroeder said.

Williams is now in jail on a whole list of charges, and on top of that Layton Police said he was already a parole fugitive with warrants.

Pollard said police found her car abandoned and damaged in Magna. She said her money, purse and cell phone were gone.

But she’s thankful her boys are back home, and life can return to normal.

“I was just in tears," she said. "I was just so relieved that he was caught so that way nobody else has to go through what I had to go through. I was happy."