TUJUNGA (CBSLA.com) — An 18-year-old man has been arrested for allegedly stealing a part from the Porsche involved in the crash that killed “Fast and the Furious” star Paul Walker, authorities reported.
The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department says Tujunga resident Jameson Witty took the roof panel from the charred Porsche Carrera GT as it was being towed away Saturday from the crash site.
The flat-bed tow truck left the Valencia crash site at around 10 p.m. and was being followed by several vehicles as it headed east on Newhall Ranch Road, officials said. Police believe Witty and another man exited one of those vehicles when the tow truck stopped at a red light, pulled off the Porsche’s red T-top roof panel and drove off.
The tow truck driver reported the alleged theft to the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station.
Deputies were able to identify Witty as the suspect and arrested him Thursday morning at his home.
The stolen panel was later recovered when detectives served a search warrant at a Canyon Country home.
It was unclear if the suspects stole the panel to sell or to keep as a memento.
Officials say they’ve tracked down a second suspect, an unidentified 25-year-old man outside California who was making arrangements to turn himself in.
Witty and the second suspect will likely be charged with felony grand theft and tampering with evidence, the LASD reported. Witty’s bail was set at $20,000 and he’s due in court Monday.
The crash investigation is ongoing.
Witnesses say the crash happened minutes after Walker left a fundraising event, held by his charity Reach Out Worldwide for supertyphoon Haiyan victims, at around 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Valencia. The 40-year-old star was riding in the passenger seat of friend Roger Rodas’ Porsche.
Moments later the car had slammed into light pole and burst into flames, killing both Walker and Rodas. Authorities say speed was a factor in the crash.
Authorities urged anyone with information about the theft of the vehicle parts to call detectives at (661) 255-1121. Anonymous tips can be given at (800) 222-TIPS (8477), by texting the letters TIPLA plus your tip to CRIMES (274637), or at lacrimestoppers.org.