Overnight the Grand Junction Police Department arrested a 16-year-old male and charged him with first degree aggravated motor vehicle theft and criminal impersonation. The teen is believed to have stolen a pickup truck that was left running unattended in the driveway of a home in the 2800 block of Texas Ave. Officers later found the truck crashed and abandoned in the 500 block of Normandy Dr. (Read previously released information here.)
In this case the witness was able to provide a suspect description. An officer responding to the crash spotted the teen who matched the description of the suspect and was running in the 2800 block of Orchard Ave., which is about 900 feet from the crash site. When the officer initially asked the teen what his name was he provided a false name and date of birth. The officer was able to obtain his true name and learned the teen had two outstanding arrest warrants. Officers also learned the teen was inside the stolen truck and that he knew it was a stolen vehicle.
We are still investigating to determine if this theft is related to other recent car thefts, and to identify any other people who might be involved in these crimes. If you have information about recent car thefts in our area or the identities of the suspects please call 970-242-6707 or report the information anonymously through Crime Stoppers by calling 970-241-7867 or online at 241STOP.com.
In just the last week there have been 7 stolen vehicles in Grand Junction and Mesa County. Each of those were “puffing”, meaning they were left running unattended. This makes them easy targets for car thieves. Remember- if you have to warm your car up before driving it, warm up with it, even if you only plan to leave it running for a minute. For more information on preventing auto theft visit lockdownyourcar.org.