An alleged beer burglary in Covina ended with three 19-year-olds in custody and a botched getaway that injured a store employee and reportedly sent one suspect through a car wash on foot, police say.
Nicholas Kalscheuer and Nicholas Fiumetto are accused of trying to steal beer from the Baja Ranch Market, located at 425 S. Citrus Ave., according to Covina police.
On Wednesday around 3 p.m., the men entered the store and each grabbed a 30-pack of Tecate beer, said police.
"As they walked to exit the store, Kalscheuer dropped the beer due to store employees following him, and continued to follow Fiumetto, who was still holding the 30-pack of beer," according to a statement from Covina police.
Fiumetto and Kalscheuer ran outside, where Andy Huynh was waiting in a getaway car, police allege.
Kalscheuer was detained by a store employee while Fiumetto managed to hop in the vehicle with his beer, according to police.
A store employee tried to corral the vehicle, but ended up on the hood to avoid injury, said police. Huynh then allegedly drove away with the employee still on the hood. They made it about 50 yards, before crashing into a curb, sending the employee flying, according to police.
Both suspects fled, said police.
Fiumetto was detained and arrested by police after a short foot pursuit, according to a statement from police.
A witness told the Los Angeles Times that the "short foot pursuit" turned out to be pretty wet and wild.
Pepe Pinedo, who manages Citrus Car Wash, said he saw two police officers chase Fiumetto into the car wash tunnel.
"He got into the wash and the rollers and got all wet," he told the newspaper. "By the time he came out of the car wash, the officer was already on the other end of the tunnel. … It was kind of funny. It was a nice show." Huynh managed to escape but left his wallet in the abandoned vehicle, according to police.
"Officers were able to contact Huynh via telephone and convinced him to turn himself in a short time later," according to police.
The suspects, all 19 years old, are being held at the Covina Police Department on $50,000 bail each. The employee who was thrown from the hood was hospitalized with abrasions. He was later released.
Charges in the case include robbery, resisting arrest and assault with a deadly weapon, said police.
The Tecate was recovered.