Girl left shocked as Belfast petrol station thief tries to take car with her in it

A 10-year-old girl has been left terrified after a close encounter with a car thief at garage in south Belfast.

The girl's father Colin Ashwood was at the petrol station where he works on Tuesday at around 9.20pm. He was inside the shop paying for petrol when the shocking events unfolded.

CCTV footage captured the moment a man gets into the car. He quickly exits the vehicle when he sees Mr Ashwood's daughter in the passenger seat.

However, he then returns to the vehicle seconds later and as he gets into the car the girl jumps out the other side and runs into the garage for help.

The car then speeds off.

Her father told UTV his daughter ran up to the till screaming "Daddy, Daddy, someone is stealing the car."

By the time Mr Ashwood got out to the forecourt, his grey Seat Leon was gone. 

Mr Ashwood said his daughter hardly slept that night and is still in a state of shock.

He believes the suspect would have made off with his daughter in the car if she had not jumped out.

Police are investigating and are appealing for witnesses.

They said a male suspect made off in it in the direction of Glenmachan Street. He's described as being approximately 5' 10", slim build, with light brown or ginger hair wearing a grey top and blue bottoms.