Man found guilty of stealing Corvette from airport hanger

A St. Paul man was sentenced to 26 months in jail on felony charges after stealing a vintage Corvette from a Lake Elmo Airport Hangar on Jan. 1, 2012.

The man, identified in court documents as Tommy Spack, Jr., was found guilty of stealing a 1969 Chevrolet Corvette Coupe Stingray. Court documents said the theft was reported after the male victim’s girlfriend called and had a maintenance man check the hangar where the Corvette was stored when another man threatened to steal her boyfriend’s property from the hangar.

Court documents said the victim told Washington County Sheriff’s deputies that his girlfriend said Spack Jr. and another woman stole the Corvette. Court documents indicate that the victim’s girlfriend said someone had told her what happened after that person overheard the pair talk about how they stole the car.

After his arrested on other charges, Spack Jr. was questioned about the theft of the Corvette. Court documents indicate that Spack Jr. admitted to being at the Lake Elmo Airport in the past and was with a woman identified as Kelsie in court documents. Court documents added that Spack also admitted he knew about the theft of the Corvette, but said two other men and Kelsie were allegedly involved in the theft and had had seen Kelsie and another man driving the car on White Bear Avenue.

Court documents said deputies contacted Spack Jr’s. father who told investigators his son had a car matching the stolen Corvette’s description in their garage the week of Jan. 2, 2012. The father added that Spack Jr. had several friends in the garage during that time.

Upon speaking with one of Spack Jr.’s friends, deputies were told that Spack Jr. was trying to sell the Corvette.

Court documents said Spack Jr. admitted under further questioning to having the Corvette in the garage and claimed that Kelsie and another man identified as Jerry in court documents stole the Corvette.

Further investigation by deputies led to a man identified as John Trumble in court documents. Trumble told investigators that Spack Jr. told him he and Kelsie drove the Corvette out of the hangar and took it to Spack’s house.

Trumble then told deputies where the Corvette could be found and that a man identified as Marty Tschida III allegedly bought the Corvette from Spack Jr. Trumble told detectives that he urged Tschida to leave the Corvette on the street so it could be found and returned to its owner. The vehicle was recovered on the 4600 block of 42nd Street North in Lake Elmo on Jan. 18.

According to court documents, Tschida said Spack Jr. had stopped at his friend’s house and said he was trying to get rid of a car because he needed money. Court documents state that Tschida admitted he bought the car from Spack Jr. for $1,000 in cash and Spack Jr. promised to get him the title in about a week.

According to court documents, Tschida said he never got the title and was told by Trumble that the Corvette was stolen a little more than one week after purchasing it. Tschida added that he left the Corvette in a nice neighborhood in Lake Elmo in hopes that it would be returned to its owner.

Court documents indicate that cell phone tower information for Spack Jr.’s cell phone hit a tower on Jan. 5, 2012 in the area of the Lake Elmo airport and also later at his residence.

Spack Jr. must pay the man he stole the corvette from $18,343.15 along with a $50 fine and surcharges.


Prisoner assaults


Two separate incidents involving assault charges against prisoners at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Stillwater also came before court last week.

One prisoner, identified as Kenneth Westbrook, faces charges of fourth-degree assault against an officer.

Court documents state that on Sept. 24, Westbrook allegedly began yelling obscenities when corrections officers handed out breakfast trays. After being told to calm down, Westbrook allegedly spit in an officer’s face. Court documents indicate that Westbrook allegedly admitted to spitting at the officer because he was angry.

Court documents indicate that Westbrook said, “I wanted to spit in his face to see if that would help him or something.”

Another prisoner identified in court documents as Ryan Howard, faces charges of third-degree assault causing substantial bodily harm.

Court documents indicate that a corrections officer allegedly observed a prisoner lying on the floor and saw Howard circling and continuing to kick and hit the downed prisoner.

The downed prisoner said in court documents that he was assaulted by Howard because, “The natives kept after me for some more canteen and I wouldn’t give it to them.”

The assaulted prisoner said in court documents he was punched and kicked around the head, momentarily lost consciousness and had decreased vision in his left eye. Court documents added that the prisoner was treated at a St. Paul hospital where he received stitches and staples in his head and since the fight is unable to see light in his left eye.