Sometimes there’s perks to being always connected, especially when it comes to a stolen Tesla Model S. The owner of the aforementioned car, Katya Pinkowski, was leaving a concert last Thursday night and returned to the underground parking lot she parked in only to find her Model S was missing. Considering the car starts out at just under $70,000 with this particular model coming in at $15,000 more than that, having one stolen is enough to leave a pit in anyone’s stomach.
Following confirmation that the car wasn’t actually towed, Pinkowski called her husband who checked the Tesla app to confirm the vehicle’s location. The app allows Tesla owners to access various features of their car, the key feature in this story being the real-time location tracking. Cary, Pinkowski’s husband, saw the Model 85D was cruising down the road through Richmond, a city south of Vancouver at 43 mph (70 km/h). He then called 911, relaying the vehicle’s real-time location to the 911 operator. While a stolen car is typically a bad experience, according to the Pinkowskis, it was an enjoyable experience.
“It was so much fun, actually. I could tell the 911 operator was excited… they’d never had this before, where they could actually track the car […] I could watch him go in and out all the streets in Richmond.”
The couple also considered contacting Tesla directly to see if the company could stop the car remotely, but decided to let the local law enforcement handle the situation. According to the police, they were able to surround the vehicle and safely arrest the culprit. As they said in a press release:
“This is the first such Tesla recovery our detachment has encountered. What was unique in this incident was the ability for the Tesla owner to provide the E-Comm police dispatcher with accurate real-time tracking data.”
The culprit was a 24-year old man, and he was arrested for possession of stolen property. Luckily the Pinkowskis were able to retrieve their car at about 1 a.m. or so. According to the culprit, he was able to gain entry and access into the Model S after the couple had left a spare key fob they had recently purchased inside the car. Just goes to show that maybe being always connected may not always be a bad thing.
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