Theft Video Captures Views But Not a Culprit

Surveillance video now posted on YouTube captures the excitement: Workers give chase around 5 p.m. March 17 after a man grabs a $1,200 STIHL TS 420 concrete saw from a construction site in the 4200 block of McFarlin Boulevard in University Park.

One of the workers jumps on the hood and rides the maroon Buick LeSaber, which first reverses back down the street. The worker is still hanging onto the hood as the Buick is put in drive and races back across the screen again with other workers still giving chase on foot and in a pickup truck.

But for all their efforts to stop a theft, the construction workers didn’t help police much.

The police report put it this way: “The workers tried to stop him but were unsuccessful.”

And while the viral video of the incident has garnered more than a million views, those aren’t translating into tips.

“We are saying, ‘If you have information, give us a call,’ but we have not gotten any information so far,” Crime Prevention Officer Lita Snellgrove said Monday afternoon.

Police also don’t have license plate information for the Buick.

“And it’s not visible from the video,” Snellgrove said.

Getting the license plate information would have been more helpful than the attempted heroics captured in the video, she said.

“We recommend that you be a good witness and get a license plate, a good description of the person and the car, and also call us so we can investigate,” she said.

While the video hasn’t helped identify a suspect so far, it does offer a lesson about crime prevention, Snellgrove said.

“It appears the guy was driving around looking for an opportunity,” she said.

In this case, tools left unattended represented an opportunity.

“Definitely keep those close to you and keep an eye on them so somebody can’t just run up, put them in the car, and drive off,” she said.

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