MAYFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio (WJW) — A bold car thief claims he used Uber to travel to a quiet Cleveland suburb because he knew he could find a car that would be easy to steal.
It turns out the confident crook was correct, but police eventually caught up with him in the car that he stole that night.
Investigators say an officer in Mayfield Heights spotted the car going the wrong way down a one-way street and tried to get the driver to pull over.
What the officer did not know at the time was that the man behind the wheel had just taken the car from a home in Geauga County and had no intention of complying.
Dashcam video shows the officer using his cruiser to block the path of the car, and the suspect then backing into the cruiser and pulling forward. That’s when the officer jumped out and ordered the man at gunpoint to get out of the car.
The officer is heard on his body camera video shouting, “Let me see your hands, put it in park, put it in park!”
But the suspect then backed up into the cruiser again and pulled away, nearly ripping off the back bumper of the stolen car. The officer jumped back in his cruiser and once again started chasing the car.
The suspect decided to stop a short time later, bailed out of the car and started running through yards into a wooded area. The officer ran after and was heard on the video yelling, “You’re going to get tased! Get down, get down right now!”
He eventually caught up with the suspect and placed the 18-year-old South Euclid man under arrest.
The teen is heard telling the officer, “I’m sorry man, I’m sorry.”
During questioning, the car thief told investigators that he traveled to Chagrin Falls that night by Uber because he was convinced that he would be able to find a car that was unlocked and had the keys inside.
Mayfield Heights police said the incident provides a lesson for car owners, no matter how safe they believe their neighborhood might be.
MHPD Chief Tony Mele told Fox 8, “The criminals are counting on you thinking that, that’s exactly what they’re looking for, so lock up your cars, make sure your house, your cars are locked up, valuables are removed, take away the opportunity, it’s a crime of opportunity.”
Authorities are now considering felony charges against the suspect, for using the stolen car as a weapon to ram into the police cruiser.