Chicago police have arrested a man after he stole an ambulance and led authorities on a chase through the city.
Benjamin K. Herrington, 46, stole the Chicago Fire Department ambulance after seeing it parked in front of the firehouse in the 200-block of West Cermak Road in Chinatown. CCTV footage captured the moment that Herrington casually jumped inside the ambulance and drove off.
Local authorities were quickly alerted to the theft and before long, officers from Chicago as well as the Illinois State Police were in pursuit of the man.
ABC7 reports that at one stage, police threw a rumble stick at the ambulance, popping the rear tire. However, that didn’t stop the 46-year-old as he continued to evade police, eventually making it almost 80 miles (128 km) southwest of the city before he eventually pulled over to the side of I-55.
Footage from a helicopter following the ambulance shows that Herrington hopped out of the ambulance and began to surrender, raising his hands, dropping a backpack he was carrying, and sitting down on his knees. Despite multiple officers, including a K9 dog, standing mere feet away from him, he casually got back onto his feet, grabbed a hold of his backpack, and attempted to flee the scene on foot.
The ambulance thief can be seen running towards oncoming traffic on I-55 and at one stage, jumped in front of a Ford F-Series in an attempt to stop it and jump inside. It didn’t work and mere seconds later, police tackled Herrington to the ground and arrested him.
Local media reports that the 46-year-old has been charged with fleeing to elude a peace officer, resisting or obstructing a police officer, and possession of a stolen motor vehicle.
“We wish to thank the Chicago Police Department, Illinois State Police, and supporting suburban departments for their professionalism and patience in recovering CFD ambulance 66,” the Chicago Fire Department said in a statement. “These officers were able to secure the ambulance and get the young man the help he needs without serious injury to himself or members of the public. CFD immediately started an internal investigation into how this incident started and we will take the necessary steps to prevent futures occurrences of this type.”