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Delivery man in back of stolen truck helps police nab suspect

February 3, 2012 |  6:39 am

An Oklahoma man who allegedly tried to steal a delivery truck from a gas station parking lot in Costa Mesa was thwarted Thursday by the truck's driver, police said.

Costa Mesa police said the driver had left the keys in the ignition while he was in the back of the truck about 8 a.m. Thursday at the Chevron station at Harbor Boulevard and Gisler Avenue.

When the victim felt the truck begin to move, he pounded on the sides of the vehicle in an attempt to get the thief's attention, police said. He then phoned the police and was able to provide constant updates of his location, the Daily Pilot reported.

The alleged thief eventually pulled into an IKEA parking lot off South Coast Drive, apologized to the victim and attempted to walk away.

The victim, who was still on the phone with Costa Mesa police, directed arriving officers to the man and another person who was with him.

Police arrested Dan Floyd Hillard, 42, of Oklahoma on charges of grand theft auto and kidnapping; another man was arrested but later released due to a lack of evidence, according to a Police Department news release.


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-- Sarah Peters, Times Community News