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Suspect Steals UHP Car

Suspect Steals UHP Car

Posted - Sep. 6, 2003 at 6:04 p.m.



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Sandra Yi reporting Matthew Isham, 26, is in custody again. This time, he has shackles around his ankles.

Jared Garcia, UHP: "I don't know what to think about it. It's just an odd situation."

Isham was first arrested early this morning, after trooper Jared Garcia pulled him over on Redwood Road for a traffic violation.

Jared Garcia: "He was very calm, actually. Didn't give me any signs he was going to give me any trouble."

But the trouble soon began. Turns out, Isham was wanted on five misdemeanor warrants.

He was arrested, handcuffed and seatbelted in the patrol car. As Trooper Garcia searched the suspect's car for weapons, he heard his car go into drive.

Phil Waters: "Thin guy. Just apparently slipped the handcuffs underneat his legs and was able to jump across the seat into the driver's seat."

Jared Garcia: "It was a parking lot, so I had kind of an angle. I was hoping to get to the car in time to be able to get to the vehicle and pull him out. I didn't make it into the vehicle in time."

With the lights flashing and the dash camera still recording, Isham drove the car about four blocks before ditching it, undamaged, in a business park.

He then went on the run.

Sgt. Phil Waters: "He's really escalated his situation by doing this."

Authorities found Matther Isham a few hours later, at his Salt Lake City home. The SWAT team had the place surrounded, but Isham peacefully surrendered.

Jared Garcia: "He didn't want to go to jail. That was his reason for taking the vehicle. He didn't say he had been there before and didn't want to go back."

Now Isham faces more jail time and criminal charges, including DUI, auto theft and escaping custody.

The Utah Highway Patrol calls today's incident unusual.

It IS routine for troopers to have suspects in the front seat, since they don't have metal dividers.

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