Dumb Crook Tip of the Day: If you're going to steal a car, first check for security cameras.
A 31-year-old Laguna Beach woman learned that lesson the hard way early Thursday after she allegedly swiped the keys to a 2008 Nissan Frontier from a Mozambique Restaurant valet station and drove off with the car.
Police arrived shortly after, at 11 p.m. Wednesday, and reviewed security footage. On the tape, they saw a woman exit the restaurant, grab the Nissan's keys from the valet stand and walk around the parking lot using the key fob to locate the vehicle, according to Laguna Beach police spokesman Jason Kravetz.
The theft was reported after the owner of the Nissan finished dinner and tried to retrieve his car.
After officers watched the security video, they entered the restaurant and discovered the woman had eaten dinner with two men. One of the men paid via credit card, so his name was run through a computer to get his contact information.
After going to the man’s home, police obtained the name of the female suspect and went to her place in Arch Beach Heights, Kravetz said. Learning she no longer lived there, officers tracked down an address for one of her acquaintances in South Laguna.
Arriving in South Laguna, police found the stolen Nissan parked in a neighboring driveway on Mar Vista Drive, Kravetz said. At the acquaintance’s home, they found Allison Susan Goode, who allegedly had the stolen car keys in her purse.
By 1:05 a.m., just two hours after police began the investigation, Goode was in custody on suspicion of auto theft and possession of stolen property, Kravetz said. Bail was set at $40,000.