A man was arrested May 25 for allegedly driving and then crashing a stolen vehicle that had been painted with house paint in an attempt to disguise it.
Bobby Tyler, 31, allegedly wrecked the stolen, originally red, 2007 Chevrolet Equinox on May 15 after a confrontation with a security guard in the Senita subdivision, according to a report from the Maricopa Police Department.
Tyler was approached by Senita security guard Jonathan Lounsbury at around 1:15 a.m. after Lounsbury spotted the “white” SUV parked at a closed community park, according to the MPD report.
After a brief verbal exchange with Lounsbury, Tyler reportedly drove away at a “high rate of speed.” The vehicle eventually crashed on Honeycutt Road not far from Senita. When police arrived, the vehicle had been abandoned.
Officers responding to the accident conducted a standard registration search and discovered the vehicle was reported stolen out of Casa Grande on May 7.
Lounsbury, who later identified Tyler in a photo line-up, also identified the SUV to be the one Tyler was allegedly driving.
Earlier the same night of the accident, Tyler had reportedly contacted an officer while stopped at the intersection of John Wayne Parkway and Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway, asking if it was OK to make a right turn in the construction zone.
The officer, who noted the SUV had what appeared to be “white primer paint,” advised Tyler on how to handle the right turn. Without an indication of unlawful activity, the officer carried on with patrol.
MPD spokesperson Ricardo Alvarado said an anonymous tip led to Tyler’s apprehension 10 days later at Copper Sky.
“We received a tip Tyler was going to be at the skate park,” Alvarado said. “We had dealings with him in the past so we were able to ID him and apprehend him without incident.”
Tyler allegedly told police he had “obtained the vehicle in exchange for drugs.”
Tyler was charged with unlawful use of means of transportation, a Class 6 felony punishable by six months to two years in prison. He is on parole after serving 10 years for manslaughter caused by recklessness in a 2005 case in Stanfield.