Chase of stolen car ends in crash in New Haven

NEW HAVEN -- More cars were stolen from driveways across Connecticut Tuesday night, but the car that came careening across the sidewalk and into the side of a package store had been stolen two weeks ago.

A Toyota Prius, which was stolen from Orange, was spotted today in West Haven.“They attempted to stop it and it took off,” said Lt. Karl Jacobson of the New Haven Police Department. “When it hit the New Haven area, West Haven did not pursue it.”

The driver could not negotiate a left turn from Columbus Avenue onto West Street grazing Walt’s Package Store.

“He came and hit the garbage can and he took out the fence and he hit that pole right there,” said Pedro Colon, who lives in an apartment above the package store, but was outside, within 20 feet of the accident.

Jacobson said, “Four people fled. We were able to apprehend two.”Colon said he and other residents of the building have never seen the people who bolted from the stolen car.

The gas was shut off. The tenants of the second and third floor apartments were asked to leave while the gas line was repaired.

Stolen vehicles remain a huge issue across the state, the Lieutenant said.

“We are working in collaboration with Orange, East Haven, Hamden, West Haven, everybody to try understand this problem,” said Jacobson.

Law-enforcement is frustrated with people not locking up and leaving valuables in their cars.

“With hundreds of stolen cars over the last month, and most of them are juveniles, and it’s not a system where the juveniles are being punished so we have some juvenile admitting to stealing hundreds of cars,” said Jacobson, who noted today’s incident did not involve juveniles.