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Pregnant mother's van stolen from women's shelter parking lot

A pregnant, single mother, who was staying at a shelter, had her family car stolen late Monday night.

Kola Shariff, who is eight months pregnant, and her three kids sought safety at a Milwaukee women's shelter, but while they slept Monday night, thieves stole the family car and everything inside.

After escaping an abusive relationship, Shariff thought things would get better.

“It took a lot of courage to get my three children out of there,” Shariff said.

Instead, Tuesday morning brought more heartbreak, when Kola found her family's van gone, stolen from the shelter parking lot.

“I couldn't have been any more heartbroken or devastated,” Shariff said.

Shariff says nothing inside the van is of value to anyone else, but to her and her kids it's priceless.

“I had a box of important paperwork, such as my taxes from the last six years,” Shariff said. “And then I had two [suitcases] full of my old wedding pictures and all my children's ultrasound pictures and their baby pictures.”

The car also had all of the family's clothing, shoes and Shariff’s daughter’s presents from her recent birthday.

“It just made me sick to my stomach,” Shariff said.

According to police there is surveillance video of the thieves in action, but they're still searching for the suspects.

The van is a 2003 red Dodge Caravan with a circular dent on the front passenger door.

Kola says the thieves can keep the car, but please, return the family's belongings.

“If you had a sister or mother this happened to, what would you do?”

Shariff is now staying at a shelter outside of Milwaukee.

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