Man accused of stealing woman’s car on first day of school arrested, Titusville police say

Santiago Peña, 43, was arrested after a car and foot chase

Santiago Peña is suspected of stealing a mother's vehicle on the first day of school, according to the Titusville Police Department. (Brevard County Sheriff's Office)

TITUSVILLE, Fla. – A Daytona Beach man was arrested after stealing a mother’s car as she was loading her children for the first day of school Monday morning, according to the Titusville Police Department.

Police said the mother was getting ready to take her kids to school when Peña dropped his bicycle, jumped into her car and drove away.

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Officers said they identified the stolen 2013 white Kia within minutes of responding to the 911 call at about 7:30 a.m.

Santiago Peña, 43, was arrested after a car and foot chase. Police said he did not comply to a traffic stop and fled, driving at high speeds.

Peña, of Daytona Beach, crashed the stolen car and fled the scene on foot, police said. He was then arrested in a wooded area near the 3500 block of Cheney Highway at approximately 8:30 a.m.

“This crime against a mother and her children will not be tolerated in our city,” Sgt. Timothy Werring said in a news release. “Our vigilant officers worked skillfully and urgently to take this criminal into custody.”

Peña faces the following charges: grand theft, fleeing and eluding law enforcement, leaving the scene of a crash with damage, driving with a suspended license with knowledge, reckless driving and possession of drug paraphernalia.

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