Police: Man steals DJ Marshmello's $500K truck, leads police pursuit

The televised pursuit ended when the man crashed the custom-built truck into a light pole, police said


By Richard Winton
Los Angeles Times

LOS ANGELES COUNTY, Calif. — A monster truck owned by music producer and DJ Marshmello was stolen Wednesday night from a Ford dealership in Van Nuys, and the thief took the 3½-ton pickup on a joyride before crashing into a light pole, authorities said.

The enormous, custom-built black Ford F-550 6x6 was stolen from the service bay of a dealership on Roscoe Boulevard and belongs to Marshmello Music, according to the California Highway Patrol.

A man rode up to the dealership on a bicycle, tossed the bike into the bed of the $550,000 truck and drove off into the night, CHP officials said.

A few hours later, Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies spotted the truck driving recklessly near Malibu Knolls and Piuma roads, authorities said. Deputies began to pursue the souped-up pickup, continuing the televised chase onto the southbound 101 Freeway, where CHP officers took over the pursuit.

Dave Sparks, the truck's custom designer, posted a short video of the pursuit on Instagram and said that Marshmello's team had contacted him to say the 26-foot truck, which he had left at the dealership to be serviced, had been stolen.

Video showed the pursuit eventually left the freeway and moved onto the wide boulevards of the San Fernando Valley. A spike strip set across the truck's path did little to stop the custom-built six-wheel vehicle. An attempt to use a PIT move — a pursuit intervention technique in which police cruisers tap the rear of a vehicle in an effort to force it to spin out — also failed.

But shortly after 10 p.m., the driver, whom authorities later identified as Edward Cruz, lost control of the truck while exiting a Taco Bell parking lot and drove up onto a sidewalk, where he sheared off a light pole.

CHP officers quickly surrounded the truck, and Cruz, 27, surrendered without a struggle. Investigators think drugs or alcohol may have been involved.

The Van Nuys man was booked on suspicion of grand theft auto and felony evading police, according to the California Highway Patrol.

 

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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