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News Release

Thursday, September 24, 1998

Media Relations

Drivers Training

SEPTEMBER 24, 1998

Los Angeles: Driver's Training appeared to have taken a wrong turn on 9/22/98! Jorge Valdez and Jorge Estrada were arrested for attempted car theft (664 PC 10851 VC Joyriding) by Northeast Patrol. The Victim had observed Valdez and Estrada trying to break into his 1987 Dodge vehicle at San Fernando Road and Andrita Street at approximately 7:00 p.m. The Los Angeles Police Department was notified by the Victim. Officers Falconer and Eagleson responded and discovered the Suspects had left but most likely were in the immediate vicinity. The Officers obtained a description of the suspects and initiated a search. Minutes later, the Officers observed the Suspects a short distance away. Officers were able to immediately detain Estrada but Valdez fled the scene. A foot pursuit ensued which resulted in the subsequent capture of Valdez also. Both Suspects were taken into custody without further incident.

During questioning, Defendant Valdez stated that he was going take the car so he could practice driving a vehicle before taking the driver's test with the California Department of Motor Vehicles in the "would be" stolen car. Thanks to the outstanding efforts of Officers Falconer and Eagleson, these defendants were thwarted from using a stolen vehicle to take the driver's test.

Officer Falconer is no stranger to recovering stolen cars and arresting car thieves. Falconer appears to be eligible for the prestigious 10851 VC Award given by the California Highway Patrol and the Automobile Club of Southern California. The term 10851 VC refers to the vehicle code section for driving a person's vehicle without their permission. This award is given to officers who have observed and arrested six car thieves in stolen vehicles within a year.

For Release 4:30 pm PST
September 24, 1998