Weld County deputies use phone app to arrest suspect

Staff reports
Posted 8/25/21

BRIGHTON -- It's a sign of the (technological) times.

Weld County sheriff's deputies arrested a 51-year-old man after they tracked his lost cellphone to the bed of the suspect's pickup …

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Weld County deputies use phone app to arrest suspect

Posted

BRIGHTON -- It's a sign of the (technological) times.

Weld County sheriff's deputies arrested a 51-year-old man after they tracked his lost cellphone to the bed of the suspect's pickup truck.

Steven Sandoval could face charges of criminal impersonation, criminal mischief, attempting to influence a public servant and eluding. Sheriff's office spokesman Joe Moylan said all those potential charges are felonies. Sandoval could face a series of misdemeanor counts, too, including resisting arrest, driving with a revoked license and driving without insurance. Moylan said deputies added a potential extra felony charge of attempting to introduce contraband into the jail during booking.

It's up to the Weld County District Attorney's Office to make the decision.

The arrest happened around 1:15 a.m. Aug. 23 in the 9100 block of Weld County Road 2, west of Brighton, according to deputies. They saw Sandoval driving a white 2000 Chevy pickup truck.  Inside the storage lot, Sandoval allegedly told deputies he was his little brother, Anthony.

"The deputy pulled up on his cellphone a mugshot of Steven Sandoval, as well as a list of his known tattoos, and was able to confirm the driver was in fact Steven Sandoval," Moylan said. "While trying to talk Sandoval out of his pickup to take him into custody, the deputy placed his county-issued cellphone on the rail of the truck’s bed."

After that, Moylan said, Sandoval shifted into drive and fled the scene, crashing through a security gate in the process. Not long after the crash, the deputy realized his phone was missing.

"He used his personal cellphone to call another deputy to have him find it using the 'Find My iPhone app," Moylan said.  "The second deputy was able to locate the cellphone as it traveled west toward Boulder on the E-470 tollway. The phone stopped about 2:47 a.m. at an address in the 4800 block of Jay Road in Boulder."

Moylan said Boulder County sheriff's deputies were able to arrest Sandoval on Jay Road. The missing cellphone was in the bed of Sandoval’s truck. Sandoval was treated at an area hospital before his arrest. Sandoval is in the Weld County Jail on a $23,000 bond.

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