On Thursday, December 21, 2017, around 11 a.m., a Fitchburg Police Sergeant spotted a stolen vehicle in the area of Thurston Lane and Red Arrow Trail. The sergeant began following the vehicle without immediately attempting to conduct a traffic stop. As the vehicle slowed down and appeared as though it was going to park, the sergeant activated his emergency lights to conduct a traffic stop in the area of Gene Parks Place and Percy Julian Way in the City of Madison. The vehicle briefly stopped and then rapidly accelerated away from the sergeant. The sergeant did not pursue the fleeing vehicle, but moments after the vehicle fled, it became apparent it had been involved in a collision.
Officers found the vehicle, unoccupied and heavily damaged, a short distance away. The vehicle had struck a parked vehicle and utility poles before coming to a stop. Residents assisted officers in pointing out where the occupants of the vehicle had fled. A sixteen-year-old and a fifteen-year-old female were taken into custody.
Investigating officers also learned three children, all two years-old and relatives of the teenage girls*, had been in the vehicle unrestrained at the time of the crash. The three two-year-olds were taken to a local hospital as a precaution. No injuries were reported.
The fifteen-year-old and sixteen-year-old were transported to the Dane County Juvenile Reception Center for charges related to the incident.
The vehicle was reported stolen earlier in the morning from the 3300 block of Leopold Way. The owner reported the car was briefly left running and unlocked.
This vehicle was the second vehicle reported stolen in the City of Fitchburg today.
As winter has officially arrived, we remind vehicle owners to refrain from leaving their vehicles unlocked and running to warm them up. We also suggest vehicle owners take a few minutes to verify they know where all of their keys are to ensure no keys are accidentally left in the vehicle. Finally, always lock your doors.
Prepared by: Sergeant Edward Hartwick
Case #: 17-18073
*As a point of clarification the three two-year-olds were not in the vehicle at the time it was stolen and were not related to the vehicle owner. The two-year-olds were placed into the vehicle after it was stolen.
As originally noted they are related to the teenagers who were taken into custody as a result of this investigation.