06.20.14 Stolen Vehicle and Pursuit Arrest
At approximately 1015 hours on Friday, June 20, 2014, Officer Anthony Weaver, Lancaster Bureau of Police, was on routine patrol in a marked police cruiser when he observed a white Suzuki Verona, bearing PA Registration: HPE 6113, fail to stop for a stop sign at S. Christian Street and Dauphin Street. Officer Weaver began to follow the vehicle and ran a registration plate query through PennDOT and discovered that the registration plate should be displayed on a Dodge, not a Suzuki. As Officer Weaver was conducting this registration check, the Suzuki drove through a second stop sign without stopping, at which time, Officer Weaver initiated a vehicle stop by activating his emergency lights and siren.
The Suzuki failed to stop for Officer Weaver and began to flee from the marked police cruiser failing to stop at multiple stop signs and several red lights. At one point the Suzuki drove the wrong way on a one-way roadway, crossed the center of the roadway to drive on the wrong side of a two-way roadway, and struck a parked car before the driver drove into the parking lot at the Washington Elementary School, 545 S. Ann Street, where he abruptly abandoned the vehicle, causing Officer Weaver’s police cruiser to strike the rear of the Suzuki.
As the driver fled on foot towards a nearby wooded area, the Suzuki, now driverless, continued to roll towards a group of approximately 40-children, ages 5 – 13, who were attending a summer camp on the school grounds. A bystander had to jump into the moving vehicle to prevent it from striking the children or counselors, even though there was a passenger inside of the vehicle at that time. Other responding officers searched the wooded area and apprehended the driver who was positively identified by Officer Weaver. This driver was a 13-year-old city resident. The Suzuki was determined to have been stolen from an auto body shop in the 900 block of E. King Street earlier in the day and the registration plate was stolen from a Dodge Durango that was parked in the 200 block of N. Reservoir Street.
Both the juvenile driver of the stolen Suzuki and the adult passenger, later identified as Jewels Diamond Pilgrim, a resident of the 500 block of E. Fulton Street, Lancaster, PA, were taken into custody and conveyed to the Lancaster Bureau of Police Station. The investigation was continued by the Auto Theft Unit of the Lancaster Bureau of Police.
As a result of this investigation, which began with Officer Weaver observing a common traffic violation, Detective Steven Owens brought the following charges:
The 13-year-old male, city resident, was charged with Theft by Unlawful Taking (Suzuki) [F-3], Receiving Stolen Property [F-3], Fleeing or Eluding a Police Officer [F-3], Theft by Unlawful Taking [M-2], 2-counts of Theft from a Motor Vehicle [M-2], 2-counts of Recklessly Endangering Another Person [M-2], along with numerous other summary violations of the vehicle code. He was subsequently committed to the Lancaster County Youth Intervention Center.
Jewels Diamond PILGRIM was charged with Receiving Stolen Property (Suzuki) [F-3], and Possession of a Small Amount of Marijuana [M]. PILGRIM was conveyed to Central Booking where he was arraigned before MDJ Benner and committed to the Lancaster County Prison in lieu of $20,000 bail.
All persons accused of a crime are considered innocent until proven guilty in court.
Anyone with information related to this incident is encouraged to contact the Lancaster Bureau of Police at (717) 735-3300.