Residents in Ann Arbor, Michigan received an unexpected light show Saturday night courtesy of a 12-year-old boy. The juvenile reportedly stole a forklift from a construction site and led police on a meandering, slow-speed chase through city streets before exiting town. Fortunately, there were no injuries resulting from this melee, but numerous cars were damaged, including a minivan that was shoved into someone’s front yard.
According to the Ann Arbor Police Department, the incident began at approximately 6:45 pm local time. Apparently, the boy found the forklift unlocked at a construction site near a middle school. Mind you, this isn’t the kind of forklift you see lifting pallets of soda at a grocery store. It’s identified by police as a Construction Genie GTH-636 Telehandler – a four-wheel-drive construction vehicle with a turbocharged diesel engine for power. It’s configurable with multiple add-ons for heavy-duty work, and this particular version has a humungous hydraulic fork on the front.
Fortunately for police, it’s slow. Speeds only reached around 20 mph during the pursuit. However, the weight and stance of the forklift made PIT maneuvers impossible. And at risk of sounding like a meme, one doesn’t simply drive in front of a turbocharged forklift driven by a juvenile delinquent. At one point during the video, an officer is heard saying “we can’t stop this thing.” Shortly thereafter, the decision is made to turn off lights and sirens and give the boy some extra space. In response, he drives on the sidewalk instead of the road.
The video ends before the chase comes to an end. Police from Washtenaw County take over as the boy leaves town, and the pursuit ends when the 12-year-old finally stops. He was promptly taken into custody, but being a minor, his identity won’t be released. However, police told ClickOnDetroit that the youngster “is known to officials.”
Here’s hoping the boy learns a lesson from this mess. As for the owner of the forklift, hopefully there won’t be any more keys left in beefy, unattended construction equipment.
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