A woman claimed that a suspect jumped into her vehicle and drove away with three children inside while she was pumping gas at an Exxon station in Seat Pleasant, Md.
Updated at 5:59 a.m. ET: Three children were falsely reported abducted during a car theft near Washington, D.C., on Sunday night, police said.
The woman's claim - on a night when emergency personnel were gearing up for the impact of Hurricane Sandy - led state police to issue an Amber Alert and search for a black Nissan Altima.
Detectives believe the woman claimed her children - ages 1, 3 and 5 - were in the car to get faster response.
The mother claimed she was pumping gas at an Exxon station in Seat Pleasant, Md., when a suspect jumped into her vehicle and drove away with the three children inside. She will be charged with making a false police report, police said in a press release.
Police later found the car in southeast D.C. The children were not inside. They were found safe later in the night.
NBC News staff contributed to this report.