Acquaintance Stole Victim’s Keys and Dodge Caravan — LAPD Arrests 2, Recovers Vehicle in Minutes

  • March 20, 2012
  • recovery stories

On the morning of February 26, 2012, the owner of a 1997 Dodge Caravan had her keys and vehicle stolen by someone that she knew. After the owner reported the theft to the Los Angeles Police Department’s Southeast Division, officers had information about the Dodge entered into the state and federal stolen vehicle system’s computer databases. This routine police action automatically activated the LoJack transponder concealed in the vehicle. Neither the owners nor law enforcement had to do anything else to activate the LoJack Stolen Vehicle Recovery Network, because LoJack’s interface with law enforcement is both seamless and instantaneous.

Thirty-nine minutes later, LAPD Southeast officers picked up the LoJack signal from the victim’s stolen 1997 Dodge Caravan on the Police Tracking Computers installed in their patrol vehicles. Following the computer’s directional cues, they tracked the signal to the area of 113th Street and Grand Ave. where they observed the vehicle, parked, with a male suspect talking to a female driver and two female passengers. In the police report, there was mention of a male suspect who had taken the vehicle; officers quickly acted, taking all four suspects into custody. Their subsequent investigation revealed that the male suspect had, in fact, stolen the vehicle, and that the female driver was unaware that the vehicle was stolen. The female driver claimed that the suspect had been drinking and she did not want him to drive.

The male suspect was arrested for Grand Theft Auto, the female driver was arrested for Driving without Owners Consent, and the two other female passengers were questioned and released. Southeast Detectives are conducting the follow-up investigation.