Ripken Kidnapping Suspect's Photo Released By Police

PHOTO: The Aberdeen Police Department in Maryland released a surveillance photo of the man suspected of abducting Vi Ripken, 74, on July 24, 2012. She is the mother of baseball hall of famer Cal Ripken Jr.
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A photo of the man suspected of abducting the mom of baseball hall of famer Cal Ripken Jr. was released today by Maryland cops.

The photo shows a man walking into what appears to be a store wearing a white button-down shirt and an orange and black baseball cap. Police describe the suspect as a white male, approximately 5-foot-10 with short brown hair and glasses.

Vi Ripken, 74, was abducted sometime between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. Tuesday by a man who used a handgun to force her into her 1998 Lincoln Town Car, according to the Aberdeen Police Department.

She was found unharmed in her car on Wednesday near her home, but was "restrained and confined," according to the Baltimore FBI.

The kidnapper is still on the loose and police believe he is armed "and should be considered to be dangerous."

Earlier today, Baltimore FBI spokesman Rich Wolf told ABCNews.com that investigators were searching for a surveillance camera that may have caught the suspect. He said authorities are looking into surveillance footage and money machines as possible sources of an image of the suspect.

Authorities are also trying to determine whether Ripken's abduction was related to her famous family.

"That's exactly what they're trying to do, find out whether this guy knew who she was before he took her," Wolf said. "We think that will be a key to the case."

Aberdeen police said they "know of no ransom" and Wolf could not say if Ripken's bank account had been accessed while she was being held by the suspect.

Gus Kowalewski, Ripken's next-door-neighbor, told the Associated Press that he spoke to Ripken on Wednesday and she said that the man tied her up, blindfolded her and did not seem to know that she was part of a famous family.

"He said he just wanted money and her car," Kowalewski told the AP.

Kowalewski said Ripken also told him that the man originally planned to put tape over her eyes, but used some sort of mask or blindfold after Ripken told him she was claustrophobic.

"He lit cigarettes for her, they stopped for food," Kowalewski said. "He said, 'I'm not going to hurt you. I'm going to take you back,' and that's what he did."

After the kidnapper left Ripken in her car, she reportedly honked her car horn until a neighbor found her, Kowalewski told the AP.

Kowalewski did not respond to requests for comment from ABCNews.com.

The Ripken family released the following statement, according to ABC News' Baltimore affiliate WMAR:

"As you now know, our mother was abducted at gunpoint from her home yesterday morning. This has been a very trying time for our family, but we are grateful and relieved that mom is back with us, safe and healthy. We want to thank everyone for their tremendous support, especially all of the law enforcement agencies that worked so hard and quickly. This is an ongoing investigation, so we hope everyone understands that we cannot comment further at this time."

Cal Ripken Jr. is a baseball icon who played shortstop and third base for the Baltimore Orioles for 21 years. He is perhaps best known for playing 2,632 consecutive games during his career, breaking Lou Gehrig's record. Ripken's brother Billy Ripken also played for the Orioles, and their father, Cal Ripken Sr., managed them both for a time.

Police are searching for a white, male suspect in his late 30s or early 40s who was last seen wearing a light-colored shirt, camouflage pants and eyeglasses.

Police are asking that anyone with information contact the Aberdeen Police Department at 410-836-5432.

ABC News' Candace Smith contributed to this report.

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