Car Thief 'Pocket Dial' Leads to Arrest

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By Myles Collier, Christian Post Contributor
April 13, 2012|10:07 am

A man was arrested for stealing cars after his cell phone repeatedly "pocket dialed" 911 leading authorities to his whereabouts in a Washington suburb.

On March 14, a Valley Communications dispatch operator answered a 911 call which seemed like a "pocket dial," or accidental dial.

Reports state that the operator heard several men talking, but they did not know the phone line was open as they discussed stealing cars.

The center's 911 system tracked the call to a cell phone which was near downtown Renton. Thinking quickly, the operator dispatched officers to the area, but the officers were unable to find the unsuspecting thieves, as reported by KBOI.

Four days later, the same operator received a 911 call from the same phone number. The operator recognized the man's voice from the previous call.

The man was reportedly was talking about a truck that was reported stolen a few day earlier. The dispatcher once again sent police to the location that was tracked to the cell phone signal.

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When officers arrived they discovered that there was a Honda which had also been reported stolen parked in the parking lot of an apartment complex. They recovered the stolen vehicle, but were unable to arrest the perpetrators.

Remarkably, after a few weeks passed, the operator yet again received a 911 calls from the same number as the previous two. Police were dispatched to the location of the cell phone signal and when they arrived at the apartment complex police found a vehicle occupied by 40-year-old Wesley Strom, according to KBOI.

Strom told police that his phone sometimes dials 911 by itself. Officers confirmed that Strom's cell phone was the same one that called 911, and discovered that he lived close to the area where the stolen Honda was retrieved.

Strom was arrested on an outstanding warrant and when interviewed by police about the stolen cars and unusual phone calls admitted to being in the stolen vehicle.

He was charged with possession of stolen property and his bail was set at $70,000.

 

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