The Washington County Sheriff’s Office is warning citizens of an incident involving the theft of a victim’s motor vehicle after he was involved in a minor traffic accident with the suspects.
The incident occurred on Wednesday, December 16, 2015 at 7:19 p.m. in the Town of Polk. The victim was northbound on Hwy 144 and stopped in traffic waiting to proceed northbound on the I41 on-ramp.
While waiting for oncoming southbound traffic on Hwy 144, the victim, a 62-year-old Town of West Bend man, was rear-ended by a dark colored pick-up truck. As the victim exited his vehicle to assess the damage, one of the occupants of the pick-up truck entered the victim’s vehicle and fled the scene northbound on Hwy 144. Simultaneously, the operator of the dark colored pick-up also fled the scene and proceeded southbound on Hwy 144.
The suspect that took the victim’s vehicle was described as a male white in his twenties, 5’8 to 5’10, thin build and wearing a grey hooded jacket. The victim’s vehicle is a silver 2012 Honda Civic with a Wisconsin license plate of 106TZA. The victim was not hurt and there were not any weapons displayed or implied by the suspects during the incident. The vehicle has yet to be located as of this release.
The Sheriff’s Office wishes to remind citizens this type of criminal activity is not routinely investigated in Washington County, but has occurred more often in urban areas as a method to steal vehicles. Law enforcement would like to underscore the importance for citizens to remain mindful of their surroundings by being observant to possible suspicious activity and immediately contacting 911 when needed. Citizens can assist law enforcement by being good witnesses and not becoming further victimized by escalating these types of incidents.
The Sheriff’s Office can provide the following advice. If involved in a minor vehicle accident, attempt to pull the vehicle completely out of traffic in a well-lit area and contact law enforcement immediately. If you decide you must exit the vehicle, remove the keys to the ignition before exiting and if you have a cell phone, keep it on you rather than leaving it in the vehicle. Turning on your emergency flashers will alert bystanders that there is an issue and draw more attention to the scene. Simply knowing the license plate number to your vehicle you are operating can assist law enforcement in getting information out to responding units quicker if you become a victim of this type of crime.
The investigation is ongoing, and anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Washington County Sheriff’s Office at 262-335-4411.