A man in the Long Island town of Merrick (my hometown! Yeah guys! We made the news!) was finally arrested after a 10-day manhunt to find the perp who stole an ambulance and took it on a nice long joy ride. And he would've gotten away with it, too, if it weren't for that meddling beer.
Yes, it wasn't Grand Theft Auto that inspired him to steal an ambulance, but the age-old criminal mainstay of alcohol.
Salvatore Brecciano, 46, allegedly managed to take the ambulance for a little spin, drove it for a little less than three miles, parked, and simply shuffled away, according to Newsday. Because he hadn't taken anything besides the keys, there was no damage, and he wasn't in it when the cops finally found it, the driver was a little bit tough to apprehend.
The police tracked him down through his beer. Ever the courteous driver, Brecciano presciently remembered that he couldn't drink while driving, and allegedly set his case of beer down next to where the ambulance was originally parked. The cops traced the beer to the local 7-Eleven, looked at who had bought cases the night of October 8th, and soon had their suspect.
I'm more amazed, though, at the route he took:
He entered a 7-Eleven on Sunrise Highway in Merrick on foot and bought a 12-pack of Budweiser with a debit card. He then left the store and walked northbound on Babylon Turnpike.
Brecciano soon turned right on Meadowbrook Road and passed the Merrick firehouse where, police said, he entered the unmanned ambulance, which was parked in front of the firehouse with the keys in the ignition.
In case you're not familiar with the minutiae of Long Island geography, and I have no idea why you wouldn't be, that's not exactly a hop, skip, and a jump. He had to have crossed several major roads while completely obliterated, and yet somehow he managed not to get obliterated by an oncoming car.
I love my hometown.
Photo credit: Bellmore-Merrick EMS