SAN JOSE – Miguel Antonio Cortinas was arrested on December 1, 2013 for being in possession of a stolen vehicle under California Penal Code 496/666.5. The theft is considered a felony.
According to authorities Cortinas told police, “that he knew he had stolen the vehicle.” Arresting officers however, he felt he had no true remorse for taking the vehicle, after abandoning it when seeing police. Cortinas also faces certain enhancements for previous convictions out of Santa Clara County under Vehicle Code 10851 – taking a vehicle without the consent of the owner.
Cameras mounted on top of police cars allow the License plate recognition system to recognize plates.
Patrolling officers using a License Plate Reader system, or LPR, were alerted to a possible stolen vehicle located in the parking lot located near the Radio Shack at 6199 Santa Teresa Blvd, in San Jose.
According to SJPD Officers Albert Morales, The San Jose PD has a few police cars equipped with the LPR readers. Morales said, “The device is used to assist when a vehicle has been stolen, and or is used when conducting a search of the area near a neighborhood where a crime has been committed. The reader is also used to canvas vehicles in that area for follow up investigation.” But, Morales said, “Not all vehicles are equipped with them”.
Officers saw Cortinas drive into the parking lot and watched as he exited the vehicle. Spotting officers, Cortinas began walking through the area towards the McDonald’s restaurant. Cortinas saw officers moving towards him and began to flee, going into the McDonald’s bathroom stall to hide from officers. Once inside, a fully uniformed officer followed him and told him to move out from the stall. But the Officer was unable to control the suspect as he fought, moving his arms and legs wildly.
The arresting officer was forced to use pepper spray to help detain him, while he called for other officers to help take the suspect into custody. It was later learned that Cortinas was under the influence of a controlled substance and in possession of methamphetamine, adding charges pc 11550 (A) and pc 11377 to his arrest for the stolen vehicle. Officers soon learned that Cortinas had a fugitive warrant for his arrest for Burglary under PC 459, and was on searchable probation under PC 1210.1, for a non-violent drug offence, with a strike offense not meeting his 5-year probationary condition.
Cortinas is currently being held without bail and is expected to appear for plea in Dept. 35 on 2/04/2014 at 9:00 AM.