12-year-old wakes up in backseat of van during carjacking

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SALT LAKE CITY — A 7th grader found himself in the middle of a carjacking in South Salt Lake City when an intoxicated man stole his mother's van while he was sleeping inside.

At approximately 9 p.m. Thursday night, 12-year-old Juan Ramirez was sleeping in the back of his mother's van while she ran inside the Subway on 3300 S. State Street where she works as a manager, to deal with an intoxicated customer inside. Ramirez' aunt was also in the van waiting with him.

Inside the store, Rameriz' mother told the intoxicated man, 32-year-old Bradly James Kane to leave and when he did, he got into her van and started to drive away. Ramirez' aunt jumped out of the van, but Ramirez was still laying in the back seat.

"I heard my aunt start yelling and then I got up and the side van door was open and I went to close it and I figured that would spook the guy off and it didn't," Ramirez said. "He just told me he was fine, and 'not to worry.'"

Ramirez faked that he had a cell phone in his pocket and told the man he was going to call police. As he pretended to reach for it he says the Kane turned to look at him and crashed the the van into another vehicle.

Kane crashed into a parked car one block away from the Subway. The van kept moving at a slow speed, dragging Kane who got part of his pants caught on the vehicle and couldn't get out, Keller said. The 12-year-old jumped in the driver's seat and stopped the vehicle.

Ramirez says that he was scared during the carjacking thinking that the man had a knife or a gun, and when the van crashed, but he says he just tried to stay calm as he tried to talk the man into pulling over.

"I was thinking how far I would go, and how I would turn out in the end," Ramirez said.

Kane was able to free himself and started to run off, but was quickly arrested by officers responding to the scene. He was booked into the Salt Lake County Jail for investigation of DUI with a child in the vehicle, reckless endangerment of a child, possession of a stolen vehicle and leaving the scene of an accident.

Utah court records show Kane had a clean criminal history until December when he accumulated three charges within days of each other. He was convicted of battery and sentenced to probation and ordered to get substance abuse treatment. Kane was also convicted of criminal trespassing in December in a separate case and a disturbing the peace infraction in yet another case.


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