Beach bag over his head didn’t spare suspected carjacker from arrest
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — When his car burglary became a carjacking that turned sour, Michael David Maxwell put a “yellow beach bag” over his head to conceal his identity from witnesses, according to investigators.
It all started about 9 p.m. Monday as a 75-year-old man was leaving the American Legion hall at 171 SW Second St. in Pompano Beach.
He climbed behind the wheel of his 2014 Lincoln MKT and drove off — not knowing that Maxwell, 35, was hiding in the SUV’s back seat, the Broward Sheriff’s Office said.
As he steered the vehicle along South Cypress Road, Maxwell popped up and grabbed the driver’s neck from behind with both hands, according to the arrest report filed in the case.
Maxwell told the startled man to, “Keep driving if you don’t want to get hurt.”
But in an attempt to get help, the driver sped up, swerved into the Valero gas station at 1495 South Cypress Road where he lost control of the SUV, jumped a curb and hit a car that was at one of the fuel islands.
The impact of the crash caused Maxwell to release his grip on the driver’s neck, investigators said. The driver left the SUV and fled to safety.
Maxwell got behind the wheel and tried to drive off but couldn’t because of the damage that happened in the crash
Noticing all this, a woman pumping gas began to video Maxwell with her cellphone camera.
Aware he was being taped, Maxwell, “retrieved a yellow beach bag that belonged to the victim and placed it over his head to conceal his identity,” the arrest report said.
Maxwell walked away but deputies were called and were able to track him with a K9 after setting up a perimeter. He was found and taken into custody in the backyard of a home on Southeast 14th Street.
Maxwell is facing charges that include carjacking, burglary, aggravated battery on a person over 65, and false imprisonment, according to jail records.