Carjacking spree ends in Eby Creek | VailDaily.com

Carjacking spree ends in Eby Creek

Veronica Whitney

EAGLE – Susie Kincaid was baking at her Eby Creek Mesa home on Tuesday night when her dog barked. What happened next sounds almost like a Hollywood thriller, but without all the machine guns and explosions.”I saw a car speeding into the driveway and then trying to back up,” Kincaid said. “I went out and I realized it wasn’t a teenage driver. He was trying to steal my daughter’s car.”The man, who is being treated at the Vail Valley Medical Center and had not been identified by police as of Wednesday evening, was one of two allegedly intoxicated men whom police investigators say went on an Eagle Countywide crime spree Tuesday night.The man rammed Kincaid’s home with her daughter’s car after allegedly wrecking two vehicles on I-70 he and another man had carjacked, police said. The man then tried to break into Kincaid’s garage, police said. He allegedly got in her car and crashed it into a freezer, police said.”Mark was truly our hero,” Kincaid said, referring to her partner, Mark Chapin. “He saved us from this guy, who was obviously stoned or on something.”The man was eventually arrested along with an apparent accomplice, whom police have identified as Cory Long, 28, of Greentown, Ind. The men were not carrying any weapons, Olmstead said. Three crashesThe spree began sometime after 9 p.m. when Long and the unidentified suspect crashed their car on I-70 between Wolcott and Eagle, and stole the car of a Carbondale couple who had stopped to help them, State Patrol Sgt. Shawn Olmstead said.They had driven off the road around mile marker 151, four miles east of Eagle, he said. “We were notified by dispatch that the occupants of the crashed car had just carjacked a couple from Carbondale who had stopped to assist them,” Olmstead said. Long and the other man allegedly drove the couple’s car to the Eagle interchange, where they crashed again, Olmstead said.”A man from Gypsum then stopped to offer assistance and when he was helping them, they stole his truck,” Olmstead said.The men allegedly took the couple’s car and the man’s truck without a fight by simply jumping into the vehicles and driving away, Olmstead said. The pair then drove into Eagle and up Eby Creek Road before losing control of the truck, which got stuck in a snowbank, Olmstead said. “After that, one of the occupants fled the scene on foot, while (Long) remained in the car,” Olmstead said. Long had apparently passed out and was arrested when police found him in the truck, Olmstead said. Stranded motoristsThe other man, after he unsuccessfully tried to steal Kincaid’ daughter’s car, allegedly ran to the front of Kincaid’s house and tried to get inside. While Chapin prevented him from getting in, Kincaid called police, who arrested the man.The man was taken to Vail Valley Medical Center, where he was still being treated Wednesday evening for injuries suffered in the string of crashes, Olmstead said. The man refuses to answer investigators’ questions, Olmstead said. He faces five counts of first degree aggravated motor vehicle theft, one count of criminal mischief and one count of first degree burglary, all felonies. He also faces one count of DUI and reckless driving, Olmstead said. Long was charged with three counts of first degree aggravated motor vehicle theft and one count of criminal mischief, all felonies. He was also charged with one count of DUI and reckless driving, both misdemeanor charges, Olmstead said. Olmstead advised drivers to be wary when thinking about helping stranded motorists. “People around here are very nice and want to help,” Olmstead said. “People need to use caution in these situations, which aren’t common. This is the first time in my 10 years of service with the State Patrol that I’ve ran into something like this.”Kincaid called the experience “surreal.””Because we don’t experience that type of crime here,” she said. “A lot of good Samaritans were completely taken advantage of.”Staff Writer Veronica Whitney can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 454 or vwhitney@vaildaily.com.Vail, Colorado