Officers arrested a burglar after he was caught in the act trying to sell stolen property while driving a stolen car Wednesday evening in Highland Park.
A Seattle resident called 911 around 7 PM when he witnessed an unknown man enter his garage and steal an air compressor in the 9400 block of 7 Ave SW. The suspect took the pilfered air compressor back to a nearby car where his female passenger dutifully waited before they left the area.
A plain-clothes officer heard the call and drove to a nearby pawnshop within ten minutes of the burglary. Based on a description of the car and a partial plate from the victim, the officer found the car parked near the pawnshop, once again occupied only by the female passenger. The officer ran the license plate on the car and found that it had recently been stolen in King County.
Unbeknownst to officers at the time, the victim’s sister had the same suspicion and went to the same pawnshop. Inside the pawnshop the victim’s sister recognized the suspect and the air compressor. She took a cellphone picture of the man holding the air compressor, which prompted him to leave the store.
Officers saw the suspect exit the pawnshop still carrying the compressor which he loaded into the stolen car. Patrol officers attempted to stop the suspect, but he began driving recklessly, speeding through neighborhoods and stop signs alike.
For fear of injury to a bystander, officers terminated the vehicle pursuit about the time they were exiting city limits. Minutes later officers found the stolen car empty a few blocks away. Helpful witnesses pointed out the two suspects who were apprehended still on the same block as the car.
Anti-Crime Team officers also found narcotics on the man as well as property taken in a recent car-prowl. Officers were able to contact the victims of the car-prowl and return their property to them.
Police booked the 27-year-old man into King County Jail on investigation of attempt to elude, auto theft, trafficking in stolen property, drug possession, and burglary. The female passenger was interviewed and released from the precinct.