Four teens from Somerset County drove a gold Toyota Camry to the Exxon Gas Station on Route 27 on Monday, Nov. 6, filled the car with gas, and then fled without paying. The gas attendant contacted police to report the vehicle, which the teens drove onto New Road towards Route 1.
A South Brunswick police officer located the Camry on New Road and ran the license plate before attempting to stop the car. The vehicle was listed as stolen out of Franklin Township on Oct. 31. Officers attempted to stop the stolen vehicle, but the driver increased speed as he headed onto Major Road, then Route 1 north. The driver made a series of turns in an attempt to lose officers. The driver then came back onto Route 1 north and deliberately sideswiped a patrol car, police said. The driver then drove another half mile on Route 1 and turned into the Royal Oaks Apartment complex. The teens abandoned the stolen vehicle after striking a parked vehicle.
Four teens exited the stolen car and fled on foot Investigators later learned that the teens ran through the woods and had an Uber vehicle pick them up about half a mile away. Officers determined that one of the teens had linked his cell phone to the in-car Bluetooth that displayed the teen’s name on the dashboard. A backpack was also located inside of the vehicle that contained a high school hall pass with one of the teen’s name on it. All the suspects were identified and charged within 48 hours after they abandoned the stolen vehicle. They were charged with eluding an officer, receiving stolen property, and theft.
A second car chase took place on Saturday, Nov. 11 just before 10:30 p.m. when an officer observed a 2015 Toyota Corolla on Route 1 near Henderson Road that was listed as stolen in the NCIC database. The officer followed the vehicle northbound on Route 1 until additional patrol units arrived. He flashed his lights and siren and the vehicle pulled over as it pulled off Route 1 onto Jersey Avenue. After a few seconds, the driver then sped up and fled on Jersey Avenue. The officer did not pursue the vehicle because it was traveling at more than 75 miles per hour, police said. About five minutes later, New Brunswick Police reported the stolen vehicle had crashed on Jersey Avenue near Route 27. New Brunswick officers detained a teen from Ocean County who had fled from the vehicle. The teen was charged with joyriding. Three other teens who were riding in the car have not been identified yet.
Police have not released any of the names of the suspects who were charged in either case because the suspects are all minors.