SAN DIEGO - 10News has obtained new surveillance video showing a bizarre crime – the theft of a San Diego police vehicle.
The SUV was parked in the 300 block of 17th Street in the East Village neighborhood late Friday evening when police say 22-year-old Felicitas Flores got in and took a joy ride all the way to the North County.
Surveillance video from a warehouse across the street shows how the incident started.
In the video, Flores is seen walking toward the patrol car and looking inside. She opens the door and then places her belongings inside on the front seat.
Flores walks to the rear of the car and then walks toward the street.
A police officer is then seen walking out from behind the San Diego police command vehicle near where the SUV was parked. The officer stops her, she turns around and the two have some sort of lengthy exchange.
Flores then turns around and continues crossing the street, walking out of frame. After she emerges in another outfit, Flores crosses the street back toward the patrol vehicle.
Minutes later, she walks toward the driver's side, gets inside and eventually drives away down 17th Street and onto Interstate 5.
Police say Flores led them on a high-speed chase that eventually ended in Oceanside.
Flores' mother was driving on I-5 when the chase occurred.
"I saw some of the police on the freeway, yeah, they were passing us up," said Anabel Flores.
What she did not know was that the woman they were chasing was her daughter.
"It was crazy," she said. "I can't believe it. I cannot believe it. We're all stunned, my whole family."
The theft is the kind of reckless decision that Anabel Flores says her daughter has made most of her life. She said her daughter was 16 when doctors diagnosed her paranoid schizophrenic.
"They put her on medication for hearing voices," she said.
She says her daughter will not take her medications now and instead became hooked on other drugs.
"It saddens all of us," she said. "We have to see it. Her sisters, her brother, all of us … it's just very, very sad."
10News went to the San Diego Police Department and tried to find out what the policy is regarding leaving a patrol car unlocked or keys inside.
No one at the department would comment, only saying the incident is under investigation.
Officers are trying to determine how Flores was able to steal the police car in the first place. There is no official word on whether the vehicle was unlocked or had the keys inside.