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Friday, 12 June 2020 21:40

59 Looted Hellcats Recovered; Story Takes Tragic and Bizarre Turn

Written by Amie Williams, Motorious

A Dodge dealership in San Leandro, CA, became one of the biggest targets during a night of violent riots and intense looting on June 1, following the recent death of George Floyd, after his neck was pinned by the knee of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin during an arrest.

It turns out a total of 74 high-performance vehicles were stolen and driven right off the lot, mainly expensive and powerful Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcats. Many of these cars were caught on video roasting rubber and recklessly driving around before leaving the scene.


Fifty-nine of those cars have since been recovered. Five arrests were made. The monetary value of the cars stolen equaled $2.7 million.


After ransacking the Nike outlet store across the street, the large crowd of looters started making their way in the direction of the Dodge dealership. Once the Dodge dealership owner, Carlos Hidalgo, saw them coming, he and his employees tried to secure the building as best as they could before finding a safer place away from the chaos.


As soon as the looters---or shall we call them criminals---made their way over to the dealer, they began smashing out the showroom windows, where they were able to make it inside to the the lock box that held the keys to all cars on the lot.


After that, it didn't take long for the looters to locate their vehicles of choice including Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcats, Chargers, Challengers, Trackhawks and more. As mentioned above, before they hightailed it out of sight, they were seen doing burnouts and recklessly driving the stolen vehicles and damaging them heavily. The phrase "drive it like you stole it" definitely proved true in this scenario.


Hidalgo assessed the vehicles that have now been recovered, plenty in rough shape. Although the cars had tracking devices in the frames, with the amount of vehicles stolen that were constantly on the move, and with police still busy with the riots, it was hard to get the cars recovered quickly.


In a bizarre turn of events, the California Highway Patrol made an attempt to perform a traffic stop on one of the stolen Hellcats after it was found to be driving recklessly with a license plate that did not match the car.


The driver of the stolen Hellcat, Erik Salgado, then attempted to ram the CHP cop cars with the high-performance muscle car. Unfortunately, the situation did not end well for Salgado and his pregnant girlfriend, Brianna, who was riding passenger. Sadly, Salgado and the unborn child did not make it out of the situation. Brianna was listed as stable.


Our hearts are saddened by the situation all around. To protest is one thing, but to turn said protest into senseless violent rage along with looting and the destruction of property by hard-working businesses, etc., is another thing. There have been deaths that occurred during the rioting that didn't have to happen, some being innocent bystanders.


We thank Motorious for reprint permission. 

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