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Police: Florida lifeguard uses hammer to carjack driver at Home Depot, later steals trooper's car

Shane Jensen was working for City of Clearwater
Shane Jensen FHP cruiser
Shane Jensen
Posted at 8:03 AM, May 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-17 23:14:55-04

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. — A 22-year-old Largo man is facing multiple charges for allegedly going on a crime spree over a four-day period.

Clearwater Police arrested Shane Jensen on Monday for breaking out the windows of his supervisor's car in the parking lot at the Long Center.

He was charged with felony criminal mischief, resisting arrest with violence, battery on a law enforcement officer and possession of marijuana.

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Authorities say Jensen worked at the recreation center as a lifeguard. The City of Clearwater fired him after his arrest. He was released on bond from the Pinellas County Jail on Tuesday.

Officers say Jensen committed more serious crimes on Wednesday at the Home Depot on Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard.

According to the police report, he tried to carjack one truck, then successfully carjacked a silver 2007 Dodge Ram by threatened a a 17-year-old with a hammer.

“Pretty scary that someone can go from being a normal citizen to going on a crime spree," said Rob Brown. It was his car Jensen allegedly stole.

Jensen startled his teen son in the car while Brown was inside Home Depot.

“He jumps in with the hammer swinging and yelling ‘get out, get out!'" described Jake Brown, "so I grabbed the tape measure and slung it as hard as I could to his face. He just looked at me like I didn’t do anything to him."

Detectives say Jensen was last spotted driving the truck into Hillsborough County.

Thursday afternoon a trooper came upon a medically-distressed man along the Florida Turnpike in Okeechobee County. That man turned out to be Jensen.

The Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) reports the 22-year-old was incoherent when the trooper began talking with him. The trooper called for paramedics.

Authorities say Jensen was sitting on the grass shoulder next to the trooper's marked FHP Dodge Charger and when the trooper went to get a bottle of water for Jensen, he jumped into the patrol car and drove off, going northbound on the Turnpike.

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Troopers eventually stopped the Charger and went to arrest Jensen.

On May 17, the Florida Highway Patrol released the dash cam videos of Jensen allegedly stealing a cruiser during the crime spree.

The FHP say that's when the 22-year-old put the patrol car in reverse and accelerated towards three troopers in an attempt to run them over.

Jensen continue north, driving the stolen Charger ten more miles into Osceola County where deputies attempted to stop the Dodge using stop sticks.

Authorities say Jensen swerved around the stop sticks, stopped in the median and then ran off into some nearby woods.

Troopers eventually located and arrested Jensen, charging him with reckless driving and stealing the patrol car. He was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Michael Martinez, Jensen's uncle, spoke with ABC Action News off camera.

“This is just an example of mental illness of which it’s not been completely diagnosed. It’s a shame this had to occur.. We are devastated. We have nothing but empathy for the victims. This is one episode that continued for four days. Prior to this he was a poster child for the City of Clearwater. This could happen to any family with children. He comes from a very loving family. He’s not the monster they are portraying. “

Clearwater Police reported Friday morning that troopers found the Dodge Ram truck stole on Wednesday on the Florida Turnpike near Vero Beach.