Suspect in Penn Valley vehicle theft quickly located, arrested |

Suspect in Penn Valley vehicle theft quickly located, arrested

Justin Day

A 21-year-old man with outstanding warrants is back in custody after he was linked to the theft of a truck and trailer, authorities said.

Justin Scott Day, of North San Juan, was booked on a charge of felony vehicle theft and remained Friday in the Nevada County Jail on a $75,000 bond, reports state.

A man called 911 around 2:15 p.m. Thursday to report his vehicle had just been stolen from the parking lot of True Value Hardware on Penn Valley Drive, sheriff’s spokesman Andrew Trygg said in an email.

“Our dispatchers transferred the caller to CHP, as they handle stolen vehicle reports in the unincorporated county area,” Trygg wrote. “At the same time, dispatchers issued a radio broadcast with information regarding the stolen GMC truck and trailer.”

A deputy on patrol in the Penn Valley area heard the radio broadcast and within minutes saw the vehicle pulled over on Mooney Flat Road, just off Rough and Ready Highway, Trygg said. The deputy contacted a man next to the vehicle, who was later identified as Day, and he was taken into custody.

A California Highway Patrol officer transported the truck’s owner to the scene to recover his vehicle, Trygg stated.

Day had previously pleaded to first-degree burglary and resisting arrest in connection with a Grass Valley arrest in January, but he failed to appear for sentencing on May 18 and a bench warrant was issued, court records state.

Day had fled from police in January after breaking into the rental yard of a Grass Valley hardware store and trying to steal tools and other equipment, authorities said.

Grass Valley police officers responded to an alarm call from Hills Flat Lumber, Sgt. Jason Perry said at the time.

Day had gained entry into a secure fenced area used to store rental equipment, stealing numerous items including power tools, light equipment, gas cans and chains. Day had “staged” the items on the edge of the property and intended to return for them.

Officers responded and saw the suspect during an area check. Day ran, but was detained after a chase, Perry said.

To contact Staff Writer Liz Kellar, email or call 530-477-4236.

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