Every now and then, a Los Angeles Department of Transportation employee may run across a stolen car while doing routine parking enforcement. It’s just not every day that the thief is still inside the car.
But that’s just what happened Monday morning, Los Angeles police said, when an LADOT worker ran the plates on a Ford F-250 pickup truck in the Carthay neighborhood of Central L.A.
About 10:40 a.m., the worker ran the plates on the truck in the 1200 block of South La Jolla Avenue; it came up as a stolen vehicle. That's when the employee also noticed a person was inside the truck's cab and called police.
When officers arrived, the driver "decided to leave” and the chase was on, said LAPD Wilshire Division Sgt. Anthony Vasquez.
The chase was short, less than 20 minutes, police said.
The suspect, who was not immediately identified, sped off in the Ford west toward Venice, where he bailed out while the truck was still in motion at Lincoln and Palms boulevards, Vasquez said. The truck rolled on and hit a building, denting the wall, police said.
The suspect was taken into custody without incident. He was booked on suspicion of stealing a car, Vasquez said.