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Orange County

The Case of the Hijacked Cases

January 30, 2002|TINA BORGATTA | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Police searched Tuesday for a man who hijacked a Budweiser delivery truck in Orange and drove through two counties before releasing the truck and its driver, unharmed, in San Bernardino.

The man forced his way into the truck's cab shortly after 9:15 a.m., while the driver was at a stop sign on Grove Avenue at Main Street, about two blocks from Straub Distributing Co., said Orange Police Sgt. Dave Hill.

At least two people saw the hijacking and called 911.

The incident triggered a four-hour search involving police helicopters and patrol units from several law enforcement agencies.

None were able to locate the truck--one of 80 that left the distribution company that morning loaded with beer.

The driver contacted his employer shortly after 1 p.m., saying he was in San Bernardino with the truck.

Police say the driver was tied and left on the floorboard of the truck.

Rick Sweeney, vice president of Straub, said this was the first truck hijacking in the company's 54-year history.

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