WATERBURY -- Police have been pleading with residents across the state to make certain that they lock their vehicles and take their keys.
Waterbury police have been particularly busy with stolen car cases, including one involving a shooting and a high speed chase.
Police believe a group of individuals from the Waterbury area traveled to Hulda Lane in Ridgefield, where they attempted to steal a vehicle that was unlocked and had the keys in it.
"At that point, it was reported that someone fired at them as they were attempting to steal this motor vehicle and a 15-year-old female was shot in the back," said Deputy Waterbury Police Chief Fred Spagnolo.
The homeowner shot the girl, who got away with the rest of the group in another stolen vehicle. Then, they brought her to Waterbury Hospital. She was treated and transferred to another hospital and is expected to recover.
"We do believe that this entire group of people is responsible for several motor vehicle theft in Waterbury and the Greater Waterbury area over the course of the last few weeks," said Spagnolo.
Waterbury police spotted one of those stolen vehicles early Monday afternoon. They pursued a stolen Ford Escape, which was rammed by cops at the intersection of Homestead Avenue and Frost Road.
"There were four parties in the car, who all fled," said Spagnolo. "Officers gave chase and all four parties were taken into custody without further incident."
A 16-year-old was driving the Escape, which was stolen out of Southington. 19-year-old Juan Corporan was the only one of the four who was not a minor.
"We've experienced, in the recent past, cars being stolen from suburban areas, as far away as Greenwich, that end up back in Waterbury," said Spagnolo.