A police chase on the Massachusetts Turnpike involving a stolen U-Haul truck ended Wednesday after the use of stop sticks.
A pair of men went into the Sears at the Auburn Mall seeking to purchase items when store employees became concerned the card used was stolen and called police.
Police Chief Andrew J. Sluckis, who told the Telegram & Gazette he was near the store at the time of the call, responded and chased the men as they ran to a vehicle.
He lost sight of the pair but spotted a U-Haul truck speeding away from the mall and called for backup. Massachusetts State Police joined three Auburn cruisers in the pursuit, which traveled into Millbury, Worcester, Oxford and Charlton.
Troopers in position west of the chase on the Massachusetts Turnpike deployed stop sticks and were able to disable the vehicle, which was identified as stolen, Massachusetts Police spokesman David Procopio said.
One of the suspects ran across the Mass. Pike through the eastbound lanes towards the Charlton Service Plaza, where he was arrested.
Sean McKenzie, a 28-year-old from Springfield, was arrested on charges of operating a motor vehicle after a prior suspension for an OUI, operating recklessly to endanger, using a motor vehicle without authority, receiving stolen property over $250, failure to stop for police, disorderly conduct and trespassing.
Paul B. Mock, a 20-year-old also from Springfield, was arrested as well, on charges including receiving stolen property, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. The number of guns being stolen from vehicles in Springfield is increasing in recent years.
Guns Stolen from Vehicles in Springfield2011 – 452012 – 412013 – 452014 – 502015 – 622016 – 982017 – 185**2018 – 123 **2018 numbers include the period of 01/01/18 – 10/08/18
Springfield Police Chief Paul Williams says guns being stolen from vehicles has always been a problem, but seems to have increased since it became legal for Missourians to carry without a permit in 2017.
“They leave them in the glove box, in the console, sometimes even in the trunk, but in most cases, they dont lock the car. They dont secure it,” says Williams.
Investigators believe a gun used in three murders last week in Springfield may have been stolen from an unlocked vehicle just days before.
“Bad people take whatever they steal and turn it to illegal uses, and a gun is one more thing. Criminals have always found guns in a variety of means; this is just unfortunately one way its a little easier for them to come across one, and then it certainly has a potential to be used in another crime,” says Williams.
Williams says if you want to carry a gun, carry it with you or make sure its secure. When youre not carrying it, lock it up at home or in your car, like in a locking glove box or gun safe, and of course, also always lock your car.