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J.J. STAMBAUGH

A handcuffed man stole a Knoxville Police Department cruiser in the Fort Sanders neighborhood Tuesday night but was taken into custody only moments later after crashing the vehicle into a parked car, authorities said.
The incident started about 7:30 p.m. when police took the man into custody at 2223 Laurel Ave., Sgt. Gordon Gwathney said.
The man was arrested after police received a tip that he was a fugitive with outstanding warrants from Florida and was in possession of a stolen vehicle.
After the man was cuffed with his hands behind his back and placed in the rear of the cruiser, he managed to work the cuffs around his legs so he again had use of his hands, Gwathney said. The suspect then somehow got in the front seat of the cruiser and drove off, Gwathney said, but it wasn't clear how he managed to do so.
The man made it about two blocks before crashing into a parked car near the intersection of 23rd Street and Grand Avenue, causing minor damage to both vehicles. He then led officers on a brief foot chase before he was taken into custody, Gwathney said.
Melanee Davis, 21, who was on Laurel Avenue when the incident began, said the arresting officer was speaking with a tow truck driver when the man climbed over the seat and got behind the steering wheel.
"It looked like he wiggled out of the cuffs, pulled the cuffs over his feet, jumped over the front seat, backed up and squealed the tires," she said.
The suspect's name wasn't immediately released.

Story From: Knoxville News-Sentinel
 
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