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Baltimore County man steals $3,000 worth of merchandise before driving off with police vehicle

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Posted at 1:10 PM, May 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-20 14:23:51-04

ELLICOTT CITY, Md. — Howard County Police arrested a man Sunday night after he allegedly stole from a store, and then from the department.

Officers responded to the Walmart on Ridge Road in Ellicott City to investigate a reported theft in progress. When officers arrived they saw 32-year-old Jerome Rucker with approximately $3,000 of stolen merchandise.

Rucker ran from the officer but was later caught. While the officer went back to collect evidence from Walmart, Rucker managed to uncuff himself. That's when he climbed into the driver's seat of the patrol cruiser and drove off. Police followed him and detained him in Baltimore.

Rucker was taken into custody by HCPD officers and charged with theft, auto theft, drug possession, resisting arrest, failure to obey a lawful order and escape. He is being held without bond at the Howard County Detention Center.

Police are conducting a standard internal review to confirm correct protocol was followed by officers during the incident.