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Man In Handcuffs Steals Police Car, Uses Radio To Ask For Key To Cuffs

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jan 11, 2012 5:40PM

William Francis Blankenship
Here's more proof that crime stories from Indiana are more fun than here in Illinois. A man who was arrested on drug charges somehow wound up stealing the squad car of the officer arresting him, then used the car's police radio to ask for the location of the handcuff keys.

William Francis Blankenship III of Knox, IN stole the police car in the Porter County town of Kouts. He used the police radio to ask for the location of the handcuff keys and cigarette lighter. Nice to see he had his priorities as "free myself, then have a smoke." Officers at the other end of the conversation refused to help Blankenship free himself. The squad car also contained an undetermined number of loaded guns when Blankenship stole it. (At this point we wouldn't have been surprised to hear there was a Creedence Clearwater Revival tape in the radio.)

The car was later found in a drainage ditch in nearby LaPorte County, "wrecked and submerged in water." Blankenship got away, despite a search that included Kouts Police Department, Valparaiso Police Department, Porter County Sheriff’s Police, Starke County Sheriff’s Police and the Indiana State Police. He's described as 5 feet 10 inches tall, 175 pounds, with a scruffy goatee and messy hair. Blankenship was last seen wearing blue jeans, a white and gray hoodie sweatshirt, and handcuffs.