The eight months' pregnant woman clung to the door frame of her Honda Civic for ten yards before she fell to the ground and landed in a gutter.
She suffered a fractured arm and dislocated shoulder but, thankfully, her unborn baby was unharmed.
Her ordeal happened in the Edgbaston area of Birmingham, at 6pm on August 7. The 38-year-old had pulled over to swap shopping bags with her sister.
But as she opened the boot of her car a man ran across the street, elbowed her aside and jumped behind the wheel.
Detective Constable Steph Warren, from West Midlands Police, said the thug drove off with the car boot still open.
She said: "We're appealing for help to try and locate the lady's Honda Civic which has the registration NG59 GJX.
"The boot lid was flapping open when the thief drove off so I'm hoping someone will have noticed that and call us with information about where the vehicle may have gone. The victim suffered some nasty injuries as a result of the theft and it's only good fortune that her unborn baby was not injured.
"It appears to have been an opportunist strike, the man saw the car running, with the driver's door open and took advantage.
"I'd urge people to call me if they've seen the victim's car, been offered one matching the description for sale, or has any suspicions about who the offender may be.
"This was a violent theft against a victim who was clearly in the latter stages of pregnancy, the robber had a total disregard for both the safety of the woman and her baby."
The thief is described as a light-skinned black male in his 20s, slim build, and around 6ft tall with short black hair.
Also in the car were £61 worth of ASDA shopping, a large purple handbag, the victim's Zimbabwean passport, two mobile phones, including a Blackberry and a Samsung galaxy, a red leather purse, two child booster seats and a Binatone Satellite Navigation system.