A 6-foot-3, 225-pound man reportedly crammed himself and a passenger into a tiny SmartCar to flee police who suspected him of stealing from a cellphone store at Southlake Mall in Hobart, IN, on Sunday, according to court records.
Antoine Beals, of Chicago, faces one count each of criminal confinement and theft, and four counts of criminal confinement, all felonies, NWI.com reports.
Beals allegedly cut security cords on four Apple iPhone cellphones on display at the T-Mobile storefront in the mall and fled the store with the stolen merchandise, according to detectives.
At about 1:04 p.m., Lake County dispatchers told police Beals was witnessed running around the J.C. Penney parking lot with a revolver and then entering a silver-colored rental SmartCar.
Officers chased the car to an industrial area in the 2000 block of Woodlawn Avenue in Griffith, where the suspect hit two marked Hobart police cars before striking a third and pinning an officer inside, police say.
Beals is accused of ramming his SmartCar into one officer's squad car, flattening a tire and forcing the officer to terminate the pursuit. Once surrounded by police in the parking lot at Bulkmatic Transport, Beals allegedly accelerated his SmartCar, pinning one officer's left leg and hand between two vehicles, records show.
A Griffith officer reportedly fired a shot into the Smart car when the suspect hit police vehicles and attempted to flee.
No one was struck by the gunfire, and Beals and his passenger were taken into custody.