Orange County Airship “DUKE” Assists in Recovery of Stolen Camry and Arrest of Suspect

  • January 24, 2012
  • recovery stories

On January 14, 2012, the owner of a 2001 Toyota Camry contacted the Santa Monica Police Department to report that a female suspect had stolen his vehicle.

Santa Monica Police responded to the scene, prepared a stolen vehicle report and had the stolen Toyota’s information entered into the state and federal crime computers. This routine police action automatically activated the LoJack transponder concealed in the Toyota and initiated the tracking of the vehicle.

Less than an hour later, Orange County deputies from Aliso Viejo were traveling southbound on the I-5 freeway near Ortega Highway when they began to pick up the silent LoJack signal from the stolen Toyota. The deputies radioed for assistance, requesting Airship “DUKE”, and then notified the Dana Point and San Clemente Station deputies that the vehicle was someplace south of their location. Flight deputies responded immediately, and began picking up the signal of the stolen Toyota as they continued south on the 5 Freeway. The flight deputies caught up with the Toyota, and notified ground units of its progress in the #3 lane of the highway, north of Christianitos. Deputies from San Clemente and Dana Point caught the vehicle and executed a felony traffic stop, taking the female driver (the suspect named by the victim) into custody without further incident.  The suspect was later booked for Driving Without Owner’s Consent.

The undamaged Toyota Camry was recovered and stored until the owner could retrieve it. The LoJack Vehicle Recovery System was installed in the vehicel in December 2006 by Power Toyota- Cerritos.