Police Briefs; Man Charged with Grand Theft Auto

Article excerpt

Byline: John Carter, Staff writer

A 27-year-old man was arrested at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday in the 6100 block of Japonica Road and charged with grand theft of a vehicle.

A police officer said he became suspicious of a car's vehicle identification number, which had numerous scratches and "suspicious" rivets holding its metal plate. The officer said he located the car's "confidential" identification number, which matched the number of a blue 1987 Chevrolet Caprice reported missing in September. The officer said the car had been repainted white and the interior replaced and changed from beige to blue.

The suspect told police his girlfriend bought the car for him and that it was "beige and rusty." He said he had it repainted and reupholstered for $400 cash and "$400 worth of drugs."

The officer said he asked the suspect if he suspected the car was stolen and if he noticed the fake-looking ID plate. The suspect said he "didn't dig into it -- I didn't' want to know," according to a police report. …