Irvine Police arrested 31-year-old Erik Baumle after he carjacked a Cal-Trans truck in the Boomer’s parking lot off Harvard and Michelson.
A Cal-Trans worker (victim) was sitting in his vehicle with the engine off when his passenger side door opened. The victim was startled and saw Baumle standing at the passenger door. The victim asked Baumle what he was doing, but he did not respond. Baumle then threw his dog onto the passenger seat without provocation. Not knowing if the dog was vicious and fearing or his safety, the victim exited the truck. Baumle stepped into the truck and moved from the passenger side to the driver’s side where he took possession of the vehicle. Baumle then drove out of the parking lot and onto westbound Michelson.
At the time of the carjacking, another Cal-Trans worker was parked in his work truck next to the stolen truck. The victim got into the other Cal-Trans vehicle and they followed the stolen truck while calling 911. Officers were quickly able to locate the Cal-Trans truck and a pursuit ensued. During the pursuit, Baumle drove onto John Wayne Airport property and attempted to enter a parking structure on the second floor near the departing terminals. Due to the size of the truck, it collided with the top of the structure and was unable to continue forward. Baumle then intentionally reversed the truck into an IPD police vehicle, rendering it disabled.
Baumle eventually stopped, but he remained in the vehicle for approximately five minutes before surrendering. He was ultimately placed under arrest for carjacking, theft of a vehicle, and assault with a deadly weapon. This case will be referred to the Orange County District Attorney’s office.