SAVANNAH, GA (July 21, 2013): Two Savannah juveniles picked the wrong time to steal a vehicle left running with the keys in the ignition Saturday morning when they ran into a show of force operation being performed by Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police.
The two youngsters, ages 13 and 14, were arrested after the stolen pickup truck they was stopped at Ash and 35th streets. Both suspects ran from officers but were arrested on East Duffy and 34th streets.
“Total Focus” is a county-wide operation of dozens of officers from various units of SCMPD and sometimes area law enforcement agencies assigned to intensely patrol areas where criminal activity has been reported. Officers seek out known offenders to verify compliance with court orders, perform traffic stops and heavily patrol neighborhoods in addition to regular patrols in those areas.
The officers were in the in east Savannah neighborhood around midnight when two boys riding a bicycle and another accompanying them approached a 2012 Chevrolet Silverado pickup on Alabama Avenue.
Two boys jumped into the truckand drove away, leaving the bicycle in the street . The truck later was driven into the “Total Focus” operation.
The younger boy was charged with theft by taking auto and obstruction by fleeing and transported to the Youth Detention Center. The elder boy was charged with obstruction by fleeing and released to his parents.
“Total Focus” was initiated by Police Chief Willie Lovett in an effort to help prevent crime. The fourth version of “total Focus” this year took place Friday and Saturday afternoons and evenings, saturating neighborhoods and also bolstering regular patrols downtown and attending the Central Precinct “Roll Call in the Street’ in Tatemville to help build relations with neighborhood residents.
The operation executed four felony arrests and six misdemeanor charges Friday and another felony and four misdemeanor arrests Saturday. For the two nights, 27 citations and 51 traffic citations were issued, along with a city ordinance violation charge and a parking ticket.