Police: Car Theft Victim Used Tracks in Snow to Find Suspect

DES MOINES, Iowa — There’s a happy ending for a Des Moines man whose car was stolen when he left it running to warm up Tuesday night.

Police say Jake Marshall went outside his residence in the 2600 block of Cottage Grove around 9:15 p.m. to start his car. Just as Marshall was going back inside, another family member told him his car was being stolen.

Using another vehicle, Marshall was able to track the thief using the fresh tire tracks in the snow. After catching up to his car, he called police.

Officers were able to locate the vehicle and the driver pulled over at the Kum & Go at 1300 Keo. The suspect, a juvenile, was taken into custody without incident.

Police are warning drivers about leaving their vehicles running and unattended while warming them up. Already in 2018, at least seven other vehicles have been stolen while they were left unlocked and running.

Sgt. Paul Parizek with the Des Moines Police Department says, “If you don’t have a remote start option with anti-theft feature, you are better off putting on an extra layer and toughing it out.”