Alert Off-Duty Chico Officer Catches Car Thief

Photo by southerncalifornian

On 8/23/2011 at 1722 hrs, an off-duty Chico Police officer was in the Target store parking lot on E. 20th Street. He saw a subject known to him from prior arrests behaving suspiciously in the parking lot. He saw the subject, later identified as Jacob Tracy, get into a black Honda Civic and begin to drive through the parking lot. The officer called in to the dispatch center and provided the license plate of the Honda. Dispatch checked the plate and advised that it had been reported stolen earlier that day from a residence on Normal Street.

As officers approached the area, Tracy parked the car and began to walk away from it. When he saw the officers he threw the keys under a parked vehicle. Officers took him into custody near the front of the Target store. When Tracy was searched, officers found methamphetamine concealed in the hat he was wearing and a hypodermic needle was found in his shoe. He was also in possession of a “shaved” key. A shaved key is a vehicle key which has been modified to start a variety of vehicles and is commonly used by car thieves.

Tracy was booked into the Butte County Jail on suspicion of the offenses described above. Detectives are following up on the case to determine if this theft is related to the recent string of Honda thefts which have plagued the area.

-from press release

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