WARSAW — A Marion man who is on probation for auto theft in Howard County was arrested April 3 while driving a stolen vehicle in Warsaw.
Tom T. Kemp, 39, 423 S. Gallatin St., Marion, is charged with theft, a level 6 felony; and sentence enhancement theft with prior conviction, a level 5 felony.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, on April 3, Warsaw Police officers received a dispatch regarding a possible impaired driver traveling north on SR 15 from the area of West CR 200S.
The vehicle was described as a red Ford F-150 with a camper shell. The vehicle was found in the area of South Detroit Street and East Market Street in downtown Warsaw.
An officer began following the vehicle and saw the Ford F-150 completely cross the white fog line on the right side of the roadway on Winona Avenue, in front of Fellowship Missions, driving through the parking area in front of the Mission and then correcting and continuing on.
The officer noted that if any vehicles had been parked in front of the Mission, the Ford F-150 would have struck the vehicles. The officer initiated a traffic stop at that time.
The driver identified himself as Kemp. When asked for his driver’s license, Kemp allegedly said he didn’t have one because his wallet had been stolen.
Kemp told officers that the vehicle belongs to his friend and that he was borrowing it.
Officers ran a check on the vehicle, which was reported as stolen from the Indianapolis area. Dispatch confirmed that Kemp is unlicensed and only has an Indiana identification card.
After being advised of his Miranda Rights, Kemp reportedly told police that he met his friend at the Wabash Hospital and purchased the truck from him. Kemp then said he found the truck for sale online and only knew the seller through the transaction.
Kemp was placed under arrest for theft of the vehicle. In Kemp’s pocket, police found a wallet belonging to the registered owner of the truck, along with a Social Security card, store loyalty cards and receipts.
Kemp is currently on probation for auto theft in Howard County.
Kemp was booked at the Kosciusko County Jail April 3 on a $5,250 surety and cash bond.