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Teen's joyride ends in wreck, police say

Boy allegedly hit four parked cars and then fled after taking his grandmother's SUV.

December 10, 2010|By Veronica Rocha, veronica.rocha@latimes.com

GLENDALE — Police arrested a 15-year-old La Crescenta boy who took his grandmother's SUV on a Halloween joyride, crashing into four parked cars and fleeing on foot, police said.

Glendale police on Monday tracked down the teen, whose name was withheld because he's a minor, after his grandmother told officers she didn't know who took her Mercedes SUV on Oct. 31, Sgt. Tom Lorenz said. The Mercedes was left at the crash scene and traced back to her, he said.

The teen allegedly took his grandmother's car without permission that night, visited a friend and went for joyride, Lorenz said.

The teen allegedly sped through a stop sign in the 4800 block of Maryland Avenue that night and lost control of the Mercedes, which crashed into four parked cars.

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He and his friend fled the scene and headed home, Lorenz said.

No injuries were reported in the early-morning crash.

Resident Alexa Ruegg said she heard the crash about 2:30 a.m. and found her Impala smashed like an accordion. A Toyota van had been badly broadsided, with its front bumper barely holding on.

Ruegg said the Mercedes blew out a tire when it hit her car and made several full circles before stopping against a parked Honda Accord at the end of the block.

Since the incident, Ruegg said she has been "a little more jumpy," adding that she hasn't been sleeping well because she fears a similar incident will happen again.

Residents also try not to park their vehicles on the street, she added.

"I am somewhat relieved that the young man was arrested and, yes, I'm still angry that it happened," Ruegg said."Perhaps this will make a change in his life so he realizes that he is accountable for his own actions. Joy riding, even in your grandma's car, can result in property damage in the thousands of dollars, injury and even death."

The teen was arrested on suspicion of driving without a license and hit-and-run, and was released to his parents, Lorenz said.

"His guardians will likely be held responsible for liability and the destruction that he has caused," he said.

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