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Area police agencies foil auto theft

Monday, January 20, 2003

A vehicle theft was reported to the Clay County Sheriff's Department at 12:30 a.m. Saturday. The investigation resulted in the arrest of two males and a three-hour search for a third suspect.

A witness said two males walked from a vehicle to the lot of Park Place Auto, 5100 W. U.S. 40. The males had left an older Ford Probe and then got into a red Hyundai and a short time later drove off, followed by the Ford.

Sgt. Robert Gambill and Reserve Deputy Josh Clarke responded to the call. Gambill located the two cars pulling back onto U.S. 40 from the side of the roadway, about 1/2 mile west of the car lot.

The vehicles drove west and slowed after about 3/4 of a mile. The driver of the Hyundai then jumped from the still-moving vehicle and fled south from U.S. 40. The Hyundai then stopped. The driver of the Ford Probe then stopped his vehicle.

Clarke chased the fleeing driver while Gambill took the passenger of the red car into custody.

Brazil City Patrolman Chris Blila then arrived at the scene and assisted taking the driver of the Ford into custody.

Although numerous police officers from Brazil City Police, Indiana State Police, Clay City Police, Staunton Police and the Clay County Sheriff's Department searched the area for three hours, they were not able to find the suspect.

A check of the Hyundai showed that the ignition had been broken and there was damage to the left front of the vehicle. The manager of Park Place Auto told police the car belonged on the lot.

David A. Adkins, 34, of Terre Haute and Eric A. Lanham, 19, of Terre Haute, were arrested at the scene and booked into the Clay County Jail.

Adkins was charged with aiding the offense of vehicle theft, resisting law enforcement and reckless driving. Lanham was charged with aiding the offense of vehicle theft and trespassing in a stolen vehicle.



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