Alleged Car Thief Confronted by Victim

By: Rick Montanez Email
By: Rick Montanez Email

A car is stolen right out of the owner's driveway in Colorado Springs, and it's found just blocks from where it was taken. The man who allegedly stole the car is confronted by the owner.

Lyn Harwell tells 11 News he was waiting for officers to show up when the alleged car thief got into the stolen car again. So Harwell, against advice from the 911 operator, confronted him.

"My car was stolen this morning and I found it," Harwell said to the 911 operator. He found his car because his insurance company told him stolen cars are often located within a few blocks of where they were taken. "I took a random turn down a street, I got a couple of blocks and low and behold there's my car," said Harwell.

While he was on the line with the 911 dispatcher, the alleged car thief came out of a nearby house, and walked straight to Harwell's stolen Infinity.

“Hold on, he's getting in my car,” Harwell told the operator. “Sir, that's my car don't get in there,” Harwell is heard, on the 911 recording, yelling to the alleged thief. “The police are coming right now. He's trying to get in my car. He's taking off in my car."

"Do not follow him sir, you don't know if he has a weapon in the car," advised the operator.

Harwell followed that advice, and didn't follow his car. "I was pretty stressed out," he said. "I just wanted to stop him, I wanted to say don't, stop, the police are on their way."

Harwell says he would do things differently next time. "I would probably leave that to the police," he said.

Harwell's insurance will take care of the damage done to the car. Meanwhile, police are still investigating the theft.

And police warn, not to confront any criminals because it can be very dangerous. Also, if your car is stolen and you find it, don't touch it. You may be damaging evidence.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Martinez Location: Southside on Dec 23, 2009 at 01:09 PM
    I'da beaten them with my tire iron, and not called the cops.
  • by the judge Location: deployed overseas on Dec 22, 2009 at 11:58 PM
    I agree with Citizen K. I think we need more Citizen K's and less touchy-feely types on our streets who will assist police and relieve the burden on an overburdened judicial system. Trust me Colorado Springs, our elected officials are allowing criminals to roam our streets and become our meth-producing neighbors. The decision is in YOUR OWN hands on whether you want to be a victim of some thug or part of the solution. Legally purchase a firearm and do your part as Patriots to bring justice to the lawless. The more crimminals allowed to remain free by weak judges and corrupt law enforcement officials, the higher the cost to you through legal defense fees paid by the tax paying victims themselves and even your very lives. If an intruder is caught in the home of a law abiding citizen practicing his right to protect himself and his family and subsequently dispatched then so be it. The solution is in our hands so dispatch justice legally yet severely.
  • by bj cordova Location: colorado on Dec 21, 2009 at 09:15 PM
    My daughter got her Chevy Blaser stolen from her front yard while she was sleeping her husband heard a door slam he went outside and the blazer was totaled the police accused them of doin it and the Insurance did not want to honor the full coverage on the Blazer.The thief or thiefs have gotten away with this one and it cost us alot of hardship!!
  • by Randy Location: Colorado Springs on Dec 21, 2009 at 12:04 PM
    While I understand the advice provided not to approach a criminal in connection with a crime,.. such an approach also simply encourages criminals to continue with illegal activities. If I saw someone stealing my truck and I could not stop them before they started driving,.. I would follow them while on the phone with 911. We, as a community, have inhibited the Police departments ability to respond due to budget shortfalls,.. therefor we as a community must be willing and able to pick up the slack. I am not saying "shootout at OK Corral" but to enforce and help within what the law allows. The philosophy encouraged by the 911 operator seems to be saying,.. if you see a woman being raped,.. or a man being beaten,.. it's ok to watch but do not interfere,... Astounding
  • by TK Location: CS on Dec 21, 2009 at 10:29 AM
    I'm with Citizen K.
  • by Citizen K on Dec 21, 2009 at 09:04 AM
    The victim should have just shot him. If he hadn't been on the phone with 911, he could have played it off as self-defense. More of these thugs need to just "cease being"...
  • by S Location: COS on Dec 21, 2009 at 03:31 AM
    People are tired of being the victim!
  • by Anonymous on Dec 20, 2009 at 09:39 PM
    There appears to be a grammatical error in this piece.
  • by shinybell21 Location: USA on Dec 20, 2009 at 08:21 PM
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