KPD: Three 14-year-old boys arrested following attempted Kia theft; there were others same day


Throughout the night and early morning Dec. 11-12, multiple Kias were stolen as a result of the vehicles’ anti-theft systems being relatively elementary, the Kearny PD said.

Around 10:20 a.m., Officer Sean King was patrolling his district when he observed three boys attempting to steal a KIA sedan, of which they had just broken the window. Two of the kids were already inside the vehicle manipulating the steering column, while the third was acting as a look-out.

Officer King broadcast a description and units saturated the area. Multiple foot pursuits ensued. Sgt. Ryan Stickno and Officer Jordan Miranda captured two of the suspects on Brighton Avenue, roughly a block away. The third was confined to an area of one block, between Belgrove and Brighton.

At this point, a relatively cheap investment paid off very well (as it has been lately). Sgt. David Rakowski and Officer Rich Pawlowski, of the Traffic Unit, deployed one of the Kearny Police Department’s two drones.

In less than 30 seconds, they spotted the suspect on the roof of a car dealership/garage at 216 Belgrove Drive. As units closed in on the building, the drone operators observed the suspect jump from the roof into a backyard.

Unfortunately for the suspect, Stickno captured him there seconds later.

Ultimately, all three suspects — all 14, two from Newark and one from Saddle Brook, were taken into custody.

It has not yet been determined, however, whether they were responsible for the multiple KIA thefts that occurred over the span of some hours before that (starting at about 4 a.m.). Detectives will investigate.

For this incident, however, each was charged with burglary, attempted theft of a vehicle, conspiracy, criminal mischief (for the shattered window and damage to the steering column) as well as obstructing the administration of law, resisting arrest and possession of burglars tools.

They will be released to their parents and guardians and it is unlikely that any consequence of note will result from this, but at least the vehicle wasn’t stolen and used in further criminal activity or crashed/destroyed.

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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.

Det. Sgt. Michal Gontarczuk | Kearny Police Department