An Amber Alert was issued after Sean and Winnifred Fang were abducted while sitting in their father’s minivan Saturday night. The two were later safely recovered. (Courtesy photo)

An Amber Alert was issued after Sean and Winnifred Fang were abducted while sitting in their father’s minivan Saturday night. The two were later safely recovered. (Courtesy photo)

Massive search effort results in safe recovery of abducted children

A major cooperative effort resulted successful in the recovery of two children who were abducted in a vehicle stolen while their father was making a food delivery Saturday night, San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott said at a news conference Sunday afternoon.

The Honda Odyssey, with the children inside, was stolen about 8:50 p.m. while parked in a driveway in the 2100 block of Jackson Street with the engine running as father Jeffrey Fang made a Door Dash, he said.

The children’s mother was brought to the scene when the children, Winifred, age 4, and Sean, age 2, were were found abandoned in the Honda in the 2400 block of Fitzgerald Avenue in the city’s Bayview district about 1:15 a.m.

The children were medically evaluated, then reunited with their parents, Scott said.

Scott said the department’s entire swing shift of some 100 personnel was put on overtime in the effort to find the children, adding that the situation is an example of when such a cost is necessary even during tight financial times.

“Sometimes in incidents like this you have to pull out all the stops” and commit a large amount of overtime, he said.

He said the department was determined it “would not relent until they were found,” and praised the large response by department staff, neighboring police agencies, the media, and people on social media in spreading the word of the abduction.

“It takes a team effort in a crisis situation like this to bring a successful resolution,” Scott said.

Jeffrey Fang is an immigrant who has lived in the United States for years but only brought his family over to San Francisco last year, just in time for the pandemic, as previously reported in The Examiner. He supports his family as a gig worker.

A GoFundMe established by former Examiner reporter Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez has raised more than $70,000 for the family, which Scott said showed the resilience and concern not only of San Franciscans, but the entire Bay Area.

The department is now turning its attention to finding the person or persons who stole the car.

Scott made a personal appeal to those involved “to turn themselves in.”

“Give yourselves up,” Scott said. “We won’t give up until we find you.”

Police are asking people in the areas involved to check surveillance video, particularly in the 2100 block of Jackson by Laguna Street.

Scott asked anyone with information or possible video to contact the department tip line at (415) 575-4444. The department will be putting out more information about the case as quickly as possible.

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