Car theft suspects nabbed at mall

Two New Haven men are facing multiple charges after they allegedly stole a car, used it to drive to the Westfield mall, then made numerous purchases on credit cards that had been left in the vehicle.

According to surveillance video, Jasean Smith and Marquise Harris, both 18, drove to the mall about 10:30 a.m. Saturday in a 2010 Audi Q5 that had been reported stolen from Newington the night before. Police then learned from the vehicle’s owner that the two men were making purchases in the mall using her credit cards, which had been in the car when it was stolen.

Police were able to obtain video images of the two, and identified the stolen Audi in the parking lot, according to reports. When the suspects returned to the car, they ran from police. One was captured as he tried to blend with shoppers near the Build-A-Bear store. The second surrendered when confronted with a police dog in the parking lot. The two had a total of $2,000 in merchandise purchased with stolen credit cards, plus the key to the stolen Audi, police said.

Smith was charged with second-degree larceny for the stolen car, third-degree larceny, criminal impersonation, interfering with an officer, identity theft, and several credit card charges. Harris was charged with conspiracy to commit second-degree larceny, third-degree larceny, criminal impersonation, third-degree identity theft, interfering with police, and credit card charges. Both were held on $20,000 bond for court September 10.