Overland Park officers uncover possible repeat carjackers - KCTV5

Overland Park officers uncover possible repeat carjackers

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OVERLAND PARK, KS (KCTV) -

Police in Overland Park think it was a case where one crime led to another with one suspect in custody, but others still on the loose.

It was called in as a simple shoplifting from Sears but what loss prevention officers actually stumbled upon was much more serious.

"Sometimes you never know what you are going to get into," said Gary Mason, Overland Park police spokesman.

That was certainly the situation for Overland Park police officers when they were called to Metcalf South Shopping Center on Friday afternoon.

Loss prevention officers say three men were shoplifting. When the officers confronted them in the parking lot, two of the suspects took off running.

Police arrested Zachary Templeton who was still at the car, and he is now charged with felony theft.

But his friends ran into a nearby neighborhood looking to get away. Police say they saw a woman sitting in her car in her driveway.

"She saw the two subjects walking up to her vehicle. She knew at the time what they wanted, and got out of the car, did not resist and let them take the vehicle," Mason said.

"As long as I can remember they will place police on the corner to divert some of that," neighbor Jeff Crowe said.

Crowe says his neighborhood has always had a lot of spill over from people going to and from the mall but nothing ever this serious. Still he knows it is going to happen anywhere.

"You can't get away from crime," Crowe said.

Police say the victim was seriously shaken up but not hurt.

As they started investigating, they learned the car the suspect drove to the mall was also stolen.

In this case, Belton police say it happened back on Nov. 22. A couple was sitting outside their home when two men, believed to be the same suspects, walked up and, at gunpoint, forced the couple out of their car, took it and drove off.

Police say this is the perfect example of why they say no call is ever routine.

"This seemed to be a simple shoplifting case, and we find out it is much more serious. We find out about carjackings and taking vehicles by force. It is serious, and it is dangerous," Mason said.

The other two suspects are in custody. They were arrested in Missouri and have not yet been charged.

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