Two Valley police cars were stolen Tuesday, and one still missing carries a cache of weapons and gear used by Phoenix SWAT teams.
Phoenix authorities said an unmarked police vehicle assigned to the Tactical Support Bureau, Special Assignments Unit was stolen at 9:30 a.m. from a restaurant parking lot in the 1600 block of Grand Avenue. The car was locked with the keys in the officer’s pocket.
The vehicle is a dark blue 2002 four-door Dodge Intrepid with dark tinted windows, and Arizona license plate 038-RPS.
Phoenix officials refused to provide details on the missing items.
But police spokesman Tony Morales said, "It will suffice to say that this is gear that gravely concerns us falling into the hands of street criminals."
The other police car stolen Tuesday was in Mesa by a man who was running from police, police said. A 44-yearold man, Jerry Robert Cox, was arrested, police said.
Police said the incident began at 1:07 p.m. in the 900 block of East University Drive when an officer tried to stop a speeding motorcycle ridden by Cox.
He refused to pull over, then ditched the 1992 Yamaha in the 800 block of East Fourth Place, and ran, police said. Officers guided by Mesa’s police helicopter joined the pursuit.
Cox found a police car unoccupied when the officer joined the chase, police said.
He got in the vehicle and backed into a police car, then drove away, police said.
The officer in the second car was taken to a hospital for precautionary measures.
Cox hopped a curb and drove through a convenience store parking lot before crashing into a tree, police said. He was taken to a hospital after his arrest.