Athens Police arrested a man Tuesday morning for allegedly kidnapping a one-year-old child.

According to the department, officers were dispatched to the Westwood Heights Apartments on Van Dyke Street around 6:45 am Tuesday in reference to a man causing property damage.

When they arrived, they learned that the suspect, Dillon Clayton, had smashed a rock through a window and damaged a parked car. Clayton had also entered an apartment and taken a one-year-old girl from her bed.

A spokesperson for the Athens Police Department said, "[Clayton] stated to the witnesses that it was not safe for the child to be there and that he was going to take her to the helicopter landing pad at Starr Regional Hospital."  

Officers went to the hospital launching pad but were unable to locate Clayton and the child. 

During the officers' search of the area, they learned that a man had given a child to a nurse at the hospital. Officers confirmed that the child was the one Clayton had taken. 

An officer was flagged down by a man who needed a ride. The officer was to identify that the man was Clayton. He was arrested and taken to the McMinn County Jail. 

Chief Couch, of the Athens Police Department, said “It should go without saying that this type of behavior can’t be tolerated in our community.  We are all thankful that this child was able to be located quickly.  I applaud our officers and the staff at the hospital for handling this situation so professionally.”