CONYERS, Ga. - A Newton County woman inadvertently helped police nab a pair of thieves believed connected to numerous car thefts from the side of Interstate 20.
Temiya Hurst happened to be driving on I-20 when she spotted her stolen SUV on a trailer. On the 911 call can be heard telling the dispatcher she was alongside her own stolen vehicle.
“And they have it loaded up on a trailer and I’m literally on the highway behind them,” said Hurst on the 911 call.
Dashcam video from a Conyers Police squad car of the stolen SUV on a stolen trailer pretty much was the same thing Temiya Hurst saw when she called 911 to report the theft last Monday night.
“And they have it loaded up. I look up and I noticed on the back of their U-Haul they had my truck,” said Hurst. “I didn’t believe it at first.”
Hurst said she was headed to her job as a custodian at Heritage High School to pick up her boyfriend when she spotted her SUV on I-20. She said she left the SUV on the side of the interstate a couple of days earlier after she’d run out of gas. When she spotted it on the trailer at first she thought a tow company had come to retrieve her vehicle before her uncle was supposed to do the same. Then she spotted the busted out passenger side window.
“I followed them one exit up because I noticed that they noticed I was following them and I realized it could have been a dangerous situation,” said Hurst.
Captain Jackie Dunn, with Conyers Police said everyone was surprised by the incredible coincidence.
“She was astounded she was as surprised as the rest of us,” said Captain Dunn.
He said the arrests of 30-year-old Omayeli Anika-Pemu of Winder and 44-year-old Jermaine Horton, of Birmingham, Alabama, immediately after Ms. Hurst called 911 has provided new leads in some current cases of vehicles being stolen from the side of I-20.
“We will now go check these gentleman’s salvage records at the recycle yards and we’ll try to back track and see if we can associate those thefts with them,” said Captain Dunn.
He said both suspects are facing theft by taking charges and likely other charges soon.
Captain Dunn told FOX 5 News their arrests would not have been possible had it not been for the coincidental intervention of Temiya Hurst
“What are the odds of you it was just a freak coincidence I just happened to get on the highway and it’s right there in front of me. It was a blessing,” said Hurst.
She said she is now getting rides from family members and friends because her 2001 Mitsubishi Montero was badly damaged when it was stolen.
The men were taken to the Newton County Detention Center because the crime originated in Newton County and made its way to nearby Conyers.