A 16-year-old Milwaukee boy is behind bars at the Racine County Jail suspected of participating in a car theft ring that traveled to Racine County to take vehicles from local dealerships back to Milwaukee.

The boy was apprehended Wednesday after Milwaukee police located one of the cars taken from Racine Hyundai early Wednesday morning, and Racine County District Attorney Rich Chiapete has filed a motion to have him waived into adult court, a story in The Journal Times reads.

He is expected to be charged with a host of felonies, the newspaper reports:

  • 4 counts of burglary
  • 5 counts of felony theft
  • 2 counts of attempted felony theft
  • 6 counts of felony criminal damage to property

Mount Pleasant Police at 2:06 a.m. Wednesday on patrol observed vehicles traveling west on Washington Avenue at a high rate of speed. They started chasing the cars near Commerce Drive and noticed that neither of the cars had a license plate, only a blue and white dealer tag on the rear of the cars. Once the officer turned on his emergency lights and sirens, the drivers refused to pull over.

The pursuit continued onto I-94 but ended at the county line because of safety reasons. The Hyundai dealership, 9503 Washington Avenue, is the fourth car dealership to have had cars stolen and substantial damage done to its building.

Two cars were taken July 4 from Porcaro Ford, and Racine Toyota and Palmen Chrysler were damaged extensively July 7 when thieves broke into the dealerships and attempted to drive cars through the glass showroom walls. They were unsuccessful and eventually abandoned the vehicles in place, one of which was stuck half inside the building.

A 13-year-old boy was arrested in connection with the Ford crime after he crashed the van he was driving and it burst into flames.

MPPD Sgt. Eric Relich said Friday in a press release that several additional juveniles are suspected of the recent car thefts in Milwaukee, Mount Pleasant and Sturtevant as well as other communities around Milwaukee County.

Four additional suspects – two, 17-year-old boys; a 16-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl – were also arrested, the newspaper story continues, but they remain in Milwaukee County on active juvenile orders.

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