GPD Says Man Tried to Steal Police Vehicle

First published in the Oct. 30 print issue of the Glendale News Press.

A Los Angeles man was in custody Friday afternoon after allegedly trying to steal a police vehicle while the officer who’d been using it was directing traffic nearby.
The 25-year-old man was booked on suspicion of attempted carjacking after being arrested at 10:58 a.m. Friday near Glorietta Avenue and Verdugo Road, according to Glendale Police Department Sgt. Christian Hauptmann. The suspect was placed in a GPD holding cell while waiting for Los Angeles County sheriff’s personnel to take him to jail, Hauptmann said, adding that the man has a $100,000 bail.
Hauptmann said a handful of officers were responding to an incident involving an overturned box truck near the intersection. One of the officers, who was driving a Ford Explorer unit, left the vehicle idling in the roadway with its lights flashing as he stood outside redirecting traffic away from the scene. The keys typically are left in the ignition in such circumstances.
According to the officers, the suspect had been walking past the scene when he suddenly ran toward the Explorer and climbed into the driver’s seat, prompting the officers to race to the vehicle. Officers wrestled the man out of the vehicle while he was trying to put it in drive, Hauptmann said.
There were no serious injuries reported from the collision or the arrest, Hauptmann added. It was unclear at press deadline whether the man had prior arrests or convictions, and officers had not yet identified an apparent motive, Hauptmann said.