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Winnipeg police cruiser stolen as officers track down suspected car thieves


June 27, 2019
By The Canadian Press

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WINNIPEG—Winnipeg police who were chasing a stolen vehicle ended up having one of their own cars stolen by a suspected thief.

Officers were called early in the morning to a report of a stolen car heading west toward the city limits.

Spokesman Const. Rob Carver says the officers caught up to the vehicle at a gas bar outside Winnipeg, where it appeared the suspects were trying to car-jack another vehicle.

Carver says the suspects tried to flee—one was caught and another somehow circled back, jumped into a police cruiser and took off.

That resulted in another chase and the stolen cruiser was followed for about 10 kilometres before it was stopped and the second suspect arrested.

Carver said it looks like an officer left the keys in his cruiser because he was concerned for the safety of the people being car-jacked.

“Having been a police officer for over 25 years, if I think somebody’s in danger over there and I jump out of my car, I don’t think the person over there whose life is at risk wants me to wait and make sure I stop the car and pull the keys out,” Carver told reporters Thursday.

“We’re less worried about the car than we are about making sure people are safe. We did that in this situation.”

RCMP were alerted as the first stolen car left the city limits, said Carver, and a number of officers were involved by the time it was all over.

The drain on resources meant that, even several hours later, there was a backlog of more than 300 service calls, he said.

“If we’ve got 10 cruiser cars who were there, all those officers now have to make notes and write reports. The arrest has to be processed and the scene has to be secured.”

The civilians involved in the car-jacking were not seriously hurt, he added.

News from © Canadian Press Enterprises Inc. 2019