Cell phone leads to stolen truck arrest

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Updated Mar 19, 2018

Losing a cell phone can cause just about anyone to panic, including an alleged truck thief.

Police in Madison, Wisconsin report that after stealing a pickup and smashing it into several parked cars last week, 17-year-old Keolan Phillips and a passenger bailed out on their joy ride ala Grand Theft Auto and ran.

Later, a suspect description led police to Phillips who told police that he was trying to find his new cell phone. Imagine Phillips’ surprise when an officer showed him his beloved phone which had been recovered from the stolen truck.

“The teen said it was his missing phone,” Madison Police spokesman Joel DeSpain told madison.com. “The officer told him it had been found in a heavily damaged and stolen pickup truck.”

Phillips denied stealing the truck and said that someone must have taken his phone and left it inside the vehicle. This next line is a classic and will leave fans of the old police TV show “Dragnet” cheering.

“The preponderance of evidence suggested that was not a truthful statement and he was arrested,” DeSpain said.

Tough break for Phillips. Turns out he had been wanted for skipping bail on a prior arrest for burglary and criminal damage to property. Can’t use that new cell phone where he’s going.

This whole ordeal was also a tough punch to the gut for the owner of the stolen pickup: he had made the mistake of leaving his keys behind in his truck which police say gave Phillips the opportunity he was looking for.