By Michael Abeyta

ARVADA, Colo. (CBS4) – Arvada police were busy Saturday morning with two separate events which just happened to occur within less than mile of one another. First, early in the morning, Arvada Police, with the help of other agencies, served a search warrant at a property near 72nd Avenue and Oak Street.

The scene was so big they closed 72nd Avenue for a while.

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Detective Dave Snelling, spokesman for APD, says the size of the property searched determined their response.

“It’s a very large property. So, we took due regard with caution, using tactical teams and things like that,” said Snelling.

Then a few hours later residents of a neighborhood just down the street near 72nd Avenue and Kipling Street was given a shelter in place order.

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Police say this was unrelated to the search warrant. It was instead a search for an auto theft suspect.

Neighbors told CBS4’s Michael Abeyta off camera a homeowner caught suspicious man on their property. That homeowner drew a gun on the suspect and asked them to leave their property.

That suspect then jumped into the homeowner’s truck, drove it through their garage door, across their lawn and through their fence. The suspect eventually crashed the truck into a telephone pole just outside the property. The thief wasn’t finished.

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“Then going, just not even a block away, getting into another pickup truck. They left the keys in it and took off in that truck,” said Snelling.

He says auto theft is so prevalent in the Denver metro area that it’s no surprise a coincidence like this could happen.

“The frustrating thing is that this happened in a matter of seconds. One vehicle had keys in it. The damage to this property is extensive. The damage to this vehicle is incredibly extensive. And this guy is still on the loose, ” said Snelling.

He says people need to protect themselves and their property as much as possible.

“We used to tell you lock your cars take your keys inside,” said Snelling. “That’s all valuable advice, but now we’re telling people put your car in a garage if in any way possible.”

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Arvada Police say they can’t release any information about why the search warrant was executed at 72nd and Oak until they finish their investigation.

They say the suspect who got away doesn’t present a danger to the public and is described as a balding white man wearing all dark clothing in his late 20s or early 30s.

Michael Abeyta