It’s hard to capture criminals when neighbors keep shooing them away

It looked as if LAPD detectives were ready to capture some car thieves in Echo Park earlier this week using a “bait car” – left unlocked and with the keys in the ignition – they had left parked on a street and under surveillance. Three men were soon seen peeking inside the car and began looking up and down the street to see if they were being watched. They were – not only by the Rampart Division detectives but by a neighbor, who came out of his home and “in no uncertain terms instructed the subjects to move along,” said LAPD Det. Wes Buhrmester. The same neighbor then went inside the bait car, removed the keys and then called police to report the unattended vehicle. The detectives on the surveillance team heard the call broadcast over the police radio.

“Our detectives thanked him for his honesty and attention,” Buhrmester said. “He felt somewhat badly, but he did absolutely the right thing, and we thanked him for it, and, naturally, moved the car.”

Photo from kalebdfd via Flickr

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