JACKSON – A 29-year-old woman was arrested following her alleged involvement in the theft of a vehicle and a dog that was in the car.
Police said officers Sean Greenberger and Stephen Cilento responded to a convenience store on Leesville Road, Jackson, at 6:41 p.m. July 5 upon receiving a report of a stolen vehicle.
The vehicle’s owner told the officers she had parked her 2011 Hyundai in front of the store and that her dog, a Shih-Tzu, was in the car. The vehicle was not running, but was left unlocked with the keys in the ignition.
The woman told the officers she saw a female leaning against a post in front of the store as she went inside and that when she exited the store, the female and her vehicle were gone.
The woman told the officers she left her iPhone in her car. With help from another person’s phone she was able to access a feature and determine that her phone was in a vehicle heading west on Interstate 195.
The New Jersey State Police were contacted and as Greenberger updated police dispatch of the phone’s location, a state trooper was able to locate and stop the stolen vehicle on Route 129 in Trenton, according to police.
The driver was later identified as the woman the owner of the vehicle had observed in front of the convenience store. Police said the dog was recovered.
The Jackson officers took the vehicle’s owner to retrieve her car and dog. Afterward, they accompanied the state police to the Hamilton Barracks where troopers processed and signed complaints against the woman who had been arrested. The woman was subsequently taken back to Jackson police headquarters.
The 29-year-old woman who was arrested was reported to have addresses in Howell and Yardville. She was charged with two counts of theft (one for the vehicle and one for the dog) and driving with a suspended license. Police said she had outstanding warrants for her arrest from Ewing Township and Hamilton. She was later lodged in the Ocean County Jail, Toms River.
Jackson police said similar incidents have occurred in the township in the past. Police reminded residents not to leave their unsecured vehicles, running or not, with the keys inside. Police recommended that pet owners exercise caution when leaving unattended animals inside vehicles.