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Man steals Plantation police cruiser, abandons it in Lauderhill

Police say car thief robbed convenience store before stealing car

LAUDERHILL, Fla. – Police are searching for a man who stole a Plantation police cruiser.

Plantation police spokesman Phil Toman said the cruiser was stolen after a robbery at a convenience store near Northwest 46th Avenue and Ninth Court.

Toman said an officer happened upon the robbery, got out of his cruiser and ordered the man to stop.

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Somehow the robber took off in the officer's car and drove to the Cypress Grove Apartment Homes in Lauderhill, where he abandoned it.

Local 10 News reporter Hatzel Vela spoke with a convenience store, employee who said the man grabbed a lighter and tried to leave the store.

"He told me, 'Give me lighter.' I give him (the) lighter. He didn't pay me," Romij Ahammad said.

Ahammad said the thief tried to run off, but the clerk quickly locked the door. He said the man then punched him several times in the face.

"I fell on the floor and he kicked my face and he took my money," Ahammad said.

Ahammad said the thief made off with several hundred dollars.

"I hope they catch him," he said.

Meanwhile, a woman said she was driving her daughter to work when she saw the robber driving fast in the stolen police cruiser.

She said she believed he was an officer, although he was driving with no lights.

"He was driving fast. Like, if he could have turned that corner any harder off (Northwest) 19th (Street) and (U.S. Highway) 441 he probably could have ran in the gas station," Cynthia Holston said.

The cruiser was towed from the scene. Police are still searching for the robber.

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