COLORADO SPRINGS — The Colorado Springs Police Department (CSPD) has arrested a man after weeks of investigation and multiple car thefts.
CSPD said a male suspect had been on a “crime spree” in recent weeks in Colorado Springs, committing several burglaries and numerous car thefts. He also allegedly obtained a gun during one of the burglaries, as well as equipment such as a tow trailer to assist in stealing more cars.
CSPD said the suspect was focusing on newer, higher-priced cars such as Mercedes and BMWs.
During the crime spree, the suspect eluded police in stolen cars on multiple occasions by driving recklessly and endangering others, CSPD said. Detectives with the Falcon Property Crimes Unit conducted interviews with witnesses and victims, combed through reports, and conducted surveillance at all hours of the day and night to try and identify the suspect.
Through their investigation, detectives identified the suspect as 30-year-old Yerandy Hernandez. CSPD said Hernandez is a “known, prolific offender” who was out on bond for motor vehicle theft.
After being identified, Hernandez was able to avoid arrest for several days, utilizing multiple stolen cars and behaving erratically, which was becoming increasingly more dangerous to the public and detectives.
On Wednesday, detectives worked with the Metro Vice Narcotics and Intelligence Unit’s (VNI) Motor Vehicle Theft Task Force (MVT) to locate Hernandez. At about 8 a.m., Hernandez was found inside a stolen car in the 100 block of North Academy Boulevard, near the intersection of Academy and East Bijou Street.
Hernandez tried to ram a SWAT car to escape, but the SWAT officer was able to pin the stolen car in place. Even pinned, Hernandez continued to try and use the car to escape, and officers were forced to break out a window of the car and forcibly remove him from the car.
Hernandez was taken into custody and booked into the El Paso County Criminal Justice Center.