Police officers and sheriff’s deputies gave chase Sunday when four teenagers from Colorado Springs fled authorities after being found with a stolen vehicle.
The teens were apprehended and are facing charges including vehicle theft, assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest.
A statement released by the Buena Vista Police Department indicates the March 9 incident began when a citizen spotted a runaway juvenile at the Buena Vista Loaf ‘N Jug.
The citizen called for police, explaining that she believed the individual had been listed as a runaway on Facebook.
The juvenile had left by the time the Buena Vista Police Department arrived, but officers obtained a description of the vehicle from store employees.
The citizen then called a second time after locating the suspected runaway at the Mountain View Motel, where police found a 2011 Dodge van matching the description given by Loaf ‘N Jug employees.
The suspected runaway was approached by a Buena Vista police officer who confiscated the van’s keys and ran the vehicle’s license plate, discovering it was listed as stolen out of Colorado Springs.
The suspected runaway and three other teenagers in the van then fled on foot, and a chase ensued.
Two deputies from the Chaffee County Sheriff’s Department, three off-duty Buena Vista police officers and one on-duty police officer assisted in the search. They were helped by several citizens in the area, who flagged down officers to give the whereabouts of the teens. Calls placed to Chaffee County dispatch also aided authorities.
It took about a half hour to apprehend the four juveniles.
Buena Vista police chief Jimmy Tidwell thanked those who assisted in the search.
“We really appreciate it. It’s nice to have people helping the police,” he said. “Without them, it would have taken all day, if we had ever caught them.”
One of the juveniles turned out to be the runaway that had been called into police. Another juvenile was also a reported runaway. A third juvenile had an outstanding warrant from the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office. A fourth juvenile was in possession of marijuana paraphernalia, and marijuana paraphernalia was also found in the stolen vehicle.
Police are not releasing the ages, genders or identities of the juveniles involved in the incident, but confirmed that they were all teenagers.
Charges filed against the teenagers include aggravated motor vehicle theft in the first degree, greater than $20,000; resisting arrest; criminal attempted first degree assault on a peace officer; and second degree assault on a peace officer.
All four juveniles were transported to the Pueblo Youth Services Center.