ST. CHARLES, Mo. – A St. Charles man was shot in the foot this morning after a stranger tried to steal his car while a 3-year-old was inside.

The shooting took place in the 1000 block of Elmwood Drive at about 6:30 a.m.

Lt. Tom Wilkison with the St. Charles Police Department said a man was warming up his car in the garage and went inside briefly to grab a blanket for his child who was still in the car.

FOX 2’s Nissan Rogue Runner reporter Jason Maxwell was at the scene while police were investigating.

Police later told FOX2 that when he returned to the garage he heard a car door shut and a man running out of the garage. Investigators said the suspect made it to the road, turned around, then fired one shot at the resident hitting his foot.

“In this particular instance, this is a father that thinks his 3-year-old was kidnapped. You can’t fault the father for doing that. He was doing what he thinks he needs to do and unfortunately, it was a chase that involved him getting shot,” said St. Charles Police Chief Ray Juengst.

Police said the suspect got into a light-colored SUV and drove off. The victim was taken to the hospital for treatment.

“We know that during this time of year when it is cold, no one wants to get into their cold vehicle,” Juengst said. “Car thieves know that and target those who warm their vehicles up, so please do not leave your vehicle running to warm up.”

“Our message to those who come to our community and commit these crimes is this: We will be relentless in our pursuit to identify you, arrest you, and work with our prosecuting attorney to see you are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law! We will not tolerate this crime in our community!” he added.

Investigators also said they looked at nearby doorbell or surveillance video, but it’s all too grainy or distorted to release.

Anyone who lives in the area and may have any home security video of the incident, the suspect, or the suspect’s vehicle is asked to contact St. Charles City Police at 636-949-3320.