The Salt Lake City auto theft began after the man couldn’t get a flight to Denver, police say

The 20-year-old hijacked two vehicles, attempted to ambush two others and crashed into several other cars.

(Salt Lake City Police Department) Police are investigating after a 20-year-old man reportedly hijacked two cars, attempted to steal two more and crashed into several other vehicles.

A man who appeared angry because he could not purchase a plane ticket to Denver early Friday is now in custody after Salt Lake City police said he stole two vehicles, attempted to steal two others and got into several cracking others while previously trying to evade authorities He was eventually arrested in Summit County.

At Salt Lake City International Airport early Friday around 5 a.m., the 20-year-old man first became “upset with airline employees” and “caused a disturbance,” police said.

When Salt Lake City airport officials responded, the man ambushed an SUV in the airport pickup area and forced the driver – who was not injured – from the vehicle.

The man then drove the stolen vehicle approximately 9 miles before crashing into a silver car near 900 West and 2100 South. He then did a U-turn and crashed into a white SUV, police said. None of the drivers were injured.

(Salt Lake City Police Department) This vehicle was reported as a carjacking and crash on Friday morning.

The man then tried to steal the white SUV he crashed into, according to a press release, but the driver was wearing a seat belt and was fighting back, police said.

Instead, the man got into the stolen SUV, got back behind the wheel, and headed toward South Salt Lake, where he nearly hit a building before colliding with another car.

After that accident, he got out of the stolen SUV again and hijacked a Dodge Durango, police said. The 20-year-old then drove the stolen Dodge east on Interstate 80 and “smashed into multiple cars multiple times.”

The Utah High Patrol confirmed five cars were hit on I-80, one of which overturned near Parleys Summit. Two people were taken to hospitals with minor injuries, according to the UHP.

While two Summit County sheriff’s deputies were investigating one of the accidents on I-80, they heard the carjacker throw rocks at passing cars in an attempt to stop them, Salt Lake City Police said.

Deputies then saw the man try to steal another vehicle, but the driver pulled the keys from the ignition. MPs took the man into custody around 6.15am, more than an hour after the first “disturbance” at the airport, police said.

The man was taken to a hospital for observation, according to Salt Lake City police. He is expected to be committed to the Summit County Jail on suspicion of multiple charges while the investigation continues. The Salt Lake City auto theft began after the man couldn’t get a flight to Denver, police say

Justin Scacco

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