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The Nation | IN BRIEF / AND FINALLY . . .

Stolen Car Squeals on Its Suspected Thief

April 19, 2002|From Times Wire Reports

Jose Gonzalez was charged with auto theft in Arlington, Va., over the weekend.

He had no clue it was the car that turned him in.

The late-model sedan he was driving was the Arlington County Police Department's new "bait car," wired to alert police when someone tries to steal it.

When the car called police, a map of Arlington flashed on a computer screen in the Emergency Communications Center, pinpointing the vehicle's location. Because the car was linked to a global positioning device, dispatchers tracked its movements on the computer screen and knew where to send two police cars.

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