Estimated read time: 3-4 minutes
MALAD, Idaho — Two teenage boys who were detained after leading state police on a high-speed chase from Shelley to Chubbuck were also involved in a dozen incidents involving stolen vehicles and burglary, according to a news release from the Oneida County Sheriff's Office.
On Saturday, March 11, the Oneida Sheriff's Office received a call at 5:49 p.m. to investigate a car left running unattended with the door open on a rural road, Wednesday's news release stated. The information they had at the time indicated the vehicle had been stolen out of Utah.
At about the same time, three more calls came in with reports about stolen vehicles around the Malad area. All the vehicles were later recovered, the press release said.
The suspects in this string of thefts were detained by law enforcement on Tuesday, but not before leading multiple law agencies on a high-speed chase that ranged from the Shelley area to Chubbuck.
According to a news release from the Shelley Police Department about the incident, they received a call on Tuesday at 7:15 a.m., reporting a vehicle had just been stolen. An officer responded to the scene and got a detailed vehicle description.
The stolen vehicle was seen heading south on I-15 by a Bingham County detective in an unmarked police vehicle. The detective followed the stolen vehicle until supporting units could arrive.
A pursuit ensued. Law enforcement tried to stop the vehicle. An Idaho State Police trooper deployed a spike strip, which punctured the tires on the car, police say. However, the car continued on through Fort Hall and into Bannock County.
Authorities called off the chase as they neared Chubbuck city limits out of concern for public safety.
"We were worried about getting into a densely populated area," Lt. Brad Davis of the Blackfoot/Bingham County joint detectives told EastIdahoNews.com.
Law enforcement located the stolen vehicle abandoned behind a Common Cents gas station in Chubbuck. The two suspects were later apprehended two blocks over on foot, according to police.
Evidence on scene links the duo to three other vehicle theft cases in Shelley in addition to the thefts in Oneida County. Video footage also confirmed the juveniles' involvement, Davis said.
It appears the suspects are behind a rash of vehicle thefts and burglaries up and down the I-15 corridor. Law enforcement has confirmed the two stole a dozen vehicles and burgled many others in Idaho and in Utah.
"We've confirmed cases from Beaver County, Utah, to Fremont County," Davis said.
Among the recovered items were two firearms.
Detectives told EastIdahoNews.com both juveniles could face charges for grand theft and eluding arrest.
The case is evolving, Davis added, and several other agencies have pending charges against the suspects. At this time, law enforcement has no reason to believe the two are part of a larger group of criminals.
Davis reminds the public to always lock their vehicles.
"All of the vehicle thefts were cars that were left running and unlocked. The burglaries were from cars that were unlocked," he said.
Shelley police would agree.
"Most of the time, these thefts are crimes of opportunity, not people breaking windows and hot-wiring cars," Shelley officers wrote in a Facebook post. "As a reminder, please lock your vehicles and do not leave the keys inside the vehicles."