COLUMBUS, Ohio — The CrimeTracker 10 interactive map revealed that there have been nearly 400 car thefts in central Ohio since Jan. 1.
What’s most concerning for residents is that a lot of these reported thefts were committed by teens. Within the last three days, teens are suspected to be involved in three stolen-vehicle cases.
On Jan. 16, just after midnight in Delaware County, sheriff’s deputies arrested two teens after a traffic stop that involved a stolen vehicle from Columbus. The driver was 15 years old and the passenger was 14 years old.
On Jan. 17, a teenage boy allegedly stole a vehicle from a residential garage with a 1-year-old girl inside. The vehicle and baby were found about 20 minutes later near the Linden neighborhood, but the teen suspect fled the scene.
10TV’s Bryant Somerville spoke with the child’s father, who wanted to remain anonymous.
“I want [the teen] to know they need to stop doing this, this is not right,” he said.
On Jan. 18, police lights flooded an intersection on Cleveland Avenue and Morse Road in northeast Columbus.
Police said four teenage boys ran away after they crashed a stolen vehicle outside of a gas station.
“These juveniles are stealing these cares at a very high rate. They’re operating in a very reckless manner,” said Franklin County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Jim Gilbert.
One of the teens was struck by an off-duty who was on his way to work.
“Law enforcement is going to continue to do what we can to continue to get these vehicles stopped, an attempt to get the help that’s needed with these juveniles involved in these auto thefts,” said Gilbert.