OnStar Nabs Car Thief

Perhaps a more experienced car thief would not have made the fundamental mistake that David Daniel Peterson, 26, made on the morning of March 9th when he drove off in a Silverado pickup truck to which he does not hold title.

David Peterson

It was at the breakfast rush hour at the downtown Santa Barbara Macdonald’s Restaurant when, according to Santa Barbara Police Department Public Information Officer Sgt. Riley Harwood, SBPD officers responded to a 911 call from that location reporting a stolen vehicle.  When officers contacted the owner of the vehicle—valued at $38,000—they learned that the truck carried more than $2,000 in tools.  The victim also reported that “while he’d gone inside the restaurant to order food” for approximately four minutes he had left his car keys on the driver’s seat during that brief period.

Of considerable interest to the responding officers, however, was the victim’s assurance that his truck was equipped with General Motors’ OnStar communication and navigation service.  “OnStar provided information about the stolen vehicle’s whereabouts to the SBPD Combined Communications Center,” Harwood said in his report to the media, and that information was relayed to patrol units in the field.  Pursuant to ongoing updates from OnStar, SBPD Officers Kyle Crooks and Rob Castro spotted the stolen truck being driven through the foothill neighborhoods just north of the city, and passed it traveling in the opposite direction of their patrol unit, observing the driver covering his face as their black-and-white approached.

With the Silverado speeding off in the opposite direction, Crooks and Castro quickly turned to follow the vehicle, still tracking it via constant updates from OnStar, eventually finding the truck abandoned in a nearby residential district.  Local area residents reported seeing the driver escaping through a neighboring backyard, and Crooks and Castro found Peterson crawling through hillside brush where they arrested him at gunpoint.

Peterson—on probation for auto theft—was booked into Santa Barbara County Jail on a no-bail detainer.

Photo: courtesy Santa Barbara County Jail Booking

Read more:

EdHat: Auto Theft Arrest

Noozhawk: OnStar Helps Santa Barbara Police Track Down Suspect

OnStar Nabs Car Thief was last modified: January 14th, 2019 by admin
Categories: Santa Barbara
Tags: auto theft

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