Man faces felony charge for car theft

Man faces felony charge for car theft

Driver claimed he and passenger were homeless

A Juneau man faces one felony and one misdemeanor for alleged car theft, according to an indictment filed last week.

At about 8:20 p.m. March 4, Juneau Police Department officer Eric Hoffman saw a Subaru Legacy in the Lemon Creek area that didn’t signal before turning from Davis Avenue onto Glacier Highway, according to Hoffman’s report of the incident. The car again failed to signal as it made another turn, and Hoffman pulled up to the car.

Hoffman spoke with the driver, 34-year-old Kelly Michael Stephens, who told Hoffman that the turn signal didn’t work, according to Hoffman’s report. Stephens was riding with a passenger as well, according to charging documents.

Hoffman looked into the car and saw the car’s ignition was punched and “Stephens was starting the car by fiddling with wires in the steering column,” Hoffman wrote. Hoffman then ran the license plate and found that the plate was scheduled to expire in 2019. A sticker on the plate, however, showed 2021, according to his report.

[Man faces felony charges for attempting to hit officer with car]

Back at the station, dispatch looked up the sticker and found that it belonged to a Subaru Legacy that had been stolen three days prior, according to charging documents. Hoffman found that a large feather had been placed over the Vehicle Identification Number on the windshield, and once the feather was moved, he found the VIN matched that of the stolen car.

Hoffman detained Stephens — who asked whether he was under arrest but didn’t ask what he was under arrest for, according to Hoffman’s report — and put him in his patrol car. Stephens told Hoffman that the passenger “didn’t have anything to do with it,” according to charging documents. Stephens never denied any wrongdoing, Hoffman wrote.

Stephens told Hoffman that he and the passenger were homeless and living out of the car, the report alleges. Stephens was charged with first-degree vehicle theft and misuse of plates, and was taken to Lemon Creek Correctional Center, according to charging documents.

First-degree vehicle theft is a class C felony, and improper use of registration is a class A misdemeanor.

[Police arrest man for vehicle theft a week after car chase]

• Bethany R. Kunkle, 33, was indicted for one count of third-degree assault for an alleged incident on May 13, 2018. On that date, according to the indictment, Kunkle put a man in fear of physical injury by threatening him with a knife. Third-degree assault is a class C felony.

• Anna K. Glombowski, 62, was indicted on one charge of second-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance. On Oct. 12, 2017 near Haines, the indictment alleges, Glombowski possessed 2.5 grams or more of methamphetamine. That charge is a class B felony.

• Contact reporter Alex McCarthy at Follow him on Twitter at @akmccarthy.

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