The owners of a 2008 Ford F-150 contacted the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department to report their vehicle was stolen as a result of an overnight breaking & entry (B&E) of their auto dealership’s repair shop off N. Tryon Street. A 2006 Dodge Charger owned by the dealership had also been stolen. During the B&E a 2010 Chevrolet Malibu and a 1999 Cadillac Escalade had been entered and moved in an attempt to steal them but were left behind. A 2003 Chevrolet Corvette had been damaged during the B& E. No surveillance photos were available to ID suspect(s).
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) verified the thefts and entered the vehicles’ information into the state and federal crime computers which automatically activated the LoJack® System concealed in the Ford F-150; however the Dodge Charger was not equipped with LoJack.
Within 15 minutes of the stolen vehicle entry, the CMPD officers picked up the silent LoJack signal from the stolen Ford with the LoJack Police Tracking Computers (PTC) that are installed in patrol vehicles and aircraft. An officer was conducting a stationary patrol post just north of the dealership when the LoJack signal alerted the officer to the passing Ford F-150. The officer immediately got in behind the truck to initiate a traffic stop but the vehicle did not pull over and sped away at a high rate of speed. The CMPD policy and procedures do not encourage high speed chases, thus the officer turned off the patrol vehicle’s emergency equipment, drove the posted speed limit and followed the truck until losing site. Following the directional and audible cues from the PTC, the officers tracked the Ford approximately a mile and a half, locating the abandoned truck in a residential complex parking lot off Tara Lane. The two suspects previously seen in the truck were not located. The dealership was contacted and requested the truck to be towed and stored to allow the vehicle to be processed for latent and other evidence. The Dodge Charger remains stolen.
The LoJack® System was installed in the Ford F-150 in November 2008 at Veterans Ford in Metairie, Louisiana.