Karnataka man steals police jeep, goes on 112 km joyride

A man, who stole a jeep from a police station in Karnataka’s Dharwad district and went on a long joyride to fulfil his long-pending dream, has been arrested, police said on Thursday.

The accused was identified as Nagappa Y. Hadapad, 45, a resident of Annigeri Town and working as a driver. He nursed a dream of driving a police jeep for many years. As a truck driver, he had travelled to all parts of the state as well as neighbouring states. But, his dream of going on a long ride in a police jeep remained unfulfilled.

Hadapad used to see the police jeep parked in the premises of Annigeri police station whenever he passed there. Early on Wednesday, he walked in and found that not only was the vehicle lying unlocked, its ignition key was also in place.

He thought this was the right time to fulfil his dream and drove away the police jeep as Inspector L.K. Julakatti had gone home after duty, and the two policemen on duty had dozed off.

He drove the jeep for 112 kilometres till Motebennur near Byadagi town and then parked it by the roadside and fell asleep.

The local residents observed the stationary vehicle, suspected foul play and informed local Byadagi police. The police rushed to the spot and detained Hadapad. Annigeri police were also informed and the jeep was handed over to them later.

Police suspect the accused is mentally disturbed and it is his first crime. A case has been registered and the accused sent to judicial custody.

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