‘Swarms’ of suspects are stealing cars across Kentucky

Published: Apr. 4, 2023 at 6:59 PM EDT
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ERLANGER, Ky. (WXIX) - Erlanger police and police agencies across Kentucky are working to end thefts where suspects are “swarming” victims and stealing cars.

Police say it appears the suspects are looking for easy targets such as vehicles left running or unlocked.

Erlanger Police Detective Tom Loos says one of those incidents happened on March 15 on Hallam Avenue.

A woman went outside to warm up her car around 3:30 a.m. and her husband was keeping an eye on it while she was getting ready for work.

He saw one of the suspects trying to steal the vehicle and alerted his wife and brother-in-law who also lives in the home.

“She and her brother go out to confront them and try to stop them from stealing her car. He does the boneheaded thing of trying to get in front of the car to try to stop it from pulling off. She’s on the side. They take off, they drag her on the ground to the side, and almost ran over him,” Det. Tom Loos said.

“My neighbor came up to me and told me about what happened, and then we went back on our camera footage and were able to see kind of from a distance what happened,” neighbor Nick Sexton said.

Sexton is a lifelong Erlanger resident and a family friend of the victims.

“Just for somebody to come along and just take advantage of that and put her in harm’s way and her brother in harm’s way, it was a concern for them,” he said

In Sexton’s video, there are screams as the alleged thieves take off with the cars, and, seconds later, a gunshot is fired.

Det. Loos says they can’t find the suspects because they don’t live in Erlanger.

“This group we’re dealing with came from Louisville and so it’s hard to knock on doors and do the boots-on-the-ground detective work when you have to drive an hour and a half just to get to the starting point,” Loos said.

Police say the car stolen on Hallam Avenue was found at a gas station near Louisville and was involved in a high-speed chase.

The driver crashed and the car caught fire.

One juvenile was arrested and others who were in the vehicle got away.

Police also say the suspects are armed and dangerous. If you should see a group like this, call police and do not approach them.

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