A car theft incident in Ohio took an unexpected turn when a resourceful forklift truck operator preventing the suspect from escaping with his vehicle.
The entire incident, captured on the bodycam of Akron police officers who responded to the call, which unfolded at a local scrapyard where the thief attempted to make off with a black SUV.
His attempt was thwarted when the junkyard’s forklift driver raced across the property to confront the would-be car thief before he could get away.
Forklift driver jacks up car thief
With extraordinary precision, he managed to hoist the stolen vehicle high above the ground, holding it precariously at the edge of the forklift’s long prongs until law enforcement arrived.
“So, he’s still in the car about 20 feet in the air in the loader,” the employee who called 911 told the operator, who replied that the capture was “the greatest thing” they ever heard.
“We’re having a lot of trouble here with people stealing stuff and everything and we got a guy that’s passed out or crashed in one of our vehicles in our yard,” the worker said on the call.
“I got the vehicle picked up with the loader and he’s probably 20 feet in the air now and I refuse to drop this thing to let him out and run,” the employee said.
“I mean we’ve just had so much problems here with theft and catalytic converters and just fires and everything.”
Forklift driver ruins car thief’s day
Once back on solid ground the suspect was immediately arrested. One of the officers asked what the suspect’s name was, and got a glib “None of your business, bro,” back from the handcuffed would-be thief.
He later told police that his reason for being on the property was because he was trying to get away from someone, but employees on site quickly debunked the flimsy excuse.
According to workers at Arlington Auto Wrecking, this marked the third time the suspect, identified as 26-year-old Alexander Funk, had attempted to steal from their yard.
They told the police that they had let him go after his first try, he escaped during his second, and this third time they weren’t going to let him get away with it.
Once back on solid ground and in police custody, they discovered Funk had a tools, including a sawzall, in the backpack he was wearing.
Funk finally broke down and admitted that he planned to use the tools to steal copper from the junkyard.
One of the arresting officers recounted the bizarre tale to his stunned coworkers back a the police station.
“He broke into a car at the junkyard, and before he could get out, he’s done it before, they got like a forklift,” he said on body camera footage.
“And they had him, I’m not kidding, like 20 feet off the ground, so when we got there he went right into custody.”
Funk now faces charges of criminal trespassing and possessing criminal tools, and will likely never forget what being trapped on the business end of a forklift felt like.