Man found with drugs after locking keys in car on Highway 20 |

Man found with drugs after locking keys in car on Highway 20

The man, wanted by Butte County authorities, locked his keys inside his car and was trying to break inside, authorities said.

Michael Crane, 52, of Hawaii, had suspected drugs inside his Lexus sedan and gave an officer a false name before running from the scene. Moments later officers arrested him, California Highway Patrol Officer Greg Tassone said.

Crane faces two felony counts of false personation and possession of a narcotic substance for sale. He’s also charged with two misdemeanors: falsely identifying himself and possession of marijuana for sale, Nevada County Jail reports state.

An officer found Crane around 2 p.m. Wednesday while patrolling Highway 20, near South Ponderosa Way. The officer saw a Lexus sedan on the roadside. Thinking it could be disabled, he stopped to investigate, Tassone said.

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“As he’s coming up to it, he sees a male trying to break into the vehicle,” he added.

The officer spoke to the man, later identified as Crane. He gave the officer a fake name, saying the car was his and he’d locked his keys inside, Tassone said.

Moments later Crane ran from the officer into nearby brush. Other officers arrived and formed a cordon, ensuring Crane couldn’t escape. They took him into custody about 10 minutes after he ran, Tassone added.

Officers then discovered Crane’s identity. A search of the Lexus revealed suspected heroin, marijuana and weighing scales, the officer said.

Authorities took Crane to the hospital before he was booked into jail, he added.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email or call 530-477-4239.

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