Capitol Police investigating whether to file charges against man who stole JPD cruiser, ran from police

Though both departments are working together, Capitol Police remains lead agency in case, chief says
Published: Nov. 11, 2022 at 6:41 PM CST
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The man who stole a Jackson police cruiser last night may still be charged, but that will come from another agency instead of JPD.

The lead agency in the case, Capitol Police, also initiated the pursuit that led to the recovery of the stolen patrol vehicle.

“[My officers] observed the [stolen vehicle] go by. At that point, my units got behind the vehicle. The vehicle did not stop,” Capitol Police Chief Bo Luckey said. “A pursuit then followed. It’s my understanding the pursuit was pretty lengthy.”

Videos posted to social media showed a parade of blue lights cascading down Capitol Street as police chased a man who casually hopped into that JPD cruiser and sped off.

JPD spokesperson Sam Brown didn’t say how long the pursuit lasted before our cameras captured the aftermath on Woodrow Wilson Avenue.

In fact, Brown didn’t even call it a pursuit at all.

JPD declined to release the man’s name, saying that it would not be filing charges against the man.

Luckey said his department is still investigating whether to do so.

“Anytime you’re talking about pursuits, you know, you run into the misdemeanor charges for the traffic infractions. But also, if it reaches the threshold of being dangerous, reckless, something that puts the public at risk, you start looking at felony evasion and things of that nature,” Luckey said.

Luckey said Thursday night proved to be an example of both departments working well together, and Capitol Police offering assistance when things happen in the Capitol Complex Improvement District that both his agency and JPD patrol.

“We’re not here to take over the CCID or be the only agency involved in enforcement efforts in the CCID. We’re here to assist,” Luckey said. “The commander of precinct two called me personally to tell me how much he appreciated our assistance, and how much it meant to him that our team was out there with them, and responded so quickly,” Luckey said. “And everybody worked together so well. That’s what we’re here for.”

JPD says the man - who has a history of mental illness - stole the vehicle after an officer left the patrol car unattended.

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