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Police Chased Car Thief Saturday Morning

A 17-year-old is suspected in the theft of a Honda. Police chased the driver after he jumped out near 12th Street and ran to a residential yard on Euclid.

After a pursuit in the Wilshire Boulevard-Montana Avenue neighborhood early Saturday morning, police say they nabbed a teenager suspected of stealing a Honda.

The chase started at 1:10 a.m. in the 900 block of 20th Street and involved fficers working a burglary suppression detail.

The Honda's 17-year-old alleged driver and a 20-year-old passenger were arrested about 30 minutes later with the help of a helicopter. They were found allegedly hiding in the yards of two separate residences in the 400 block of Euclid, according to Santa Monica Police Sgt. Richard Lewis. 

Officers started following the Honda after they noticed it had been double-parked on 20th Street. When the officers pulled up to the Honda, it accelerated, and they followed it for several blocks before learning the car had been reported stolen out of Los Angeles. They trailed it for several blocks before attempting a traffic stop in the 400 block of 12th Street, according to Lewis.

On 12th Street, the car pulled up to a curb and the passenger allegedly jumped out, running east between two homes. The driver then jumped out, too, running north to Carlyle then east out of sight, Lewis said.

Another juvenile was in the backseat of the car and was taken into custody as additional police units were called in to help search for the driver and front passenger, Lewis said.

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The front passenger, identified by police as Francisco Cervantes, 20, of Los Angeles, was booked into the Santa Monica jail on suspicion of violating probation and resisting police officers. The driver, a 17-year-old from Los Angeles, was booked on suspicion of grand theft auto and resisting police officers.

The rear passenger, a 16-year-old from Los Angeles, was cited and released.

Eddie Greenberg June 19, 2012 at 01:35 AM
I must say that it is great to see our SMPD out there and ready. Having this kind of activity in our city is definately not good for any unfortunate residents, who might be a an unwitting victim . With an operation this impressive perhaps these youngsters still have time to change their lives into legitimate pursuits. Well done SMPD!

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