NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Metro police helicopter helped officers on the ground find and arrest a man with a long history of car theft and evading the law.
Now, the police department and the Department of Children’s Services (DCS) are investigating how this man allegedly stole multiple cars owned by the state.
The suspect, Jacob Petitt, admitted to stealing two Nissan vehicles that police said were registered to DCS.
The case broke wide open Monday afternoon as officers spotted one of those stolen cars, prompting police to launch their helicopter to follow.
According to arrest documents, Petitt drove at a high rate of speed north from Old Hickory Boulevard and up Nolensville Road.
At the Nashville Fairgrounds, Petitt and his passenger bailed out of the car. Petitt reportedly ran through a construction site and through the grandstands above the race track.
According to an arrest affidavit, Petitt stole a golf cart belonging to the U.S. Air Force and drove away from responding police officers.
A short time later, Petitt and his stolen golf cart were seen in a trendy section of Houston Street.
It’s here that Petitt reportedly refused commands to surrender and he fought a Metro detective, punching the detective in the face and breaking the officer’s glasses.
Once arrested, Petitt admitted to stealing the DCS-owned car and another one just like it that authorities found the day before.
Inside the 2022 Nissan, police found multiple key fobs to other state-owned vehicles.
When officers asked why he fled so aggressively from officers, Petitt told them he had multiple active warrants for his arrest, including two for auto theft.
As it relates to the stolen cars and key fobs, a DCS spokesperson told News 2, “The vehicle was stolen from a DCS lot in the Bordeaux area. DCS is assessing security measures and cooperating with law enforcement on the investigation.”