Alleged car thieves captured, stolen vehicle recovered

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison-Park News | Published December 14, 2023

 James Jones, Amyreon Lucas, David Mathis, Brian McGhee

James Jones, Amyreon Lucas, David Mathis, Brian McGhee


HAZEL PARK — Four people have been arrested in connection with the case of a vehicle that was stolen in Hazel Park and recovered in Detroit.

The suspects are Amyreon Lucas, 20, of Highland Park; Brian McGhee, 21, of Detroit; David Mathis, 22, of Detroit; and James Jones, 22, of Detroit.

All four were arraigned before Magistrate Erika Morgan in the 43rd District Court on Nov. 29. Each was charged with unlawful driving away of a motor vehicle, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. Bail was set at $5,000 cash or surety for Lucas, McGhee and Mathis, with a 10% payment required for release, while Jones had his bond set at $1,000 cash surety, with the same 10% stipulation.

At press time, Lucas and McGhee had not been appointed legal counsel, according to court records. Leslie Neil Greenwald, representing Mathis, did not return requests for comment. John Secrest, representing Jones, declined to comment, noting he had just received the case.

The vehicle was a white 2020 Chevy Blazer belonging to a 29-year-old Hazel Park woman, reportedly stolen from the 1600 block of East Hayes Avenue Nov. 27. The victim found the car missing that morning. It had been left unlocked with the key fob inside, parked in the street in front of her home.

A detective with the Hazel Park Police Department investigated the theft and was able to track down the vehicle in Detroit, where it was recovered later that day.

The investigation also led to the identification of the four suspects, who were located and arrested with the assistance of Hazel Park patrol officers.

Hazel Park Police Chief Brian Buchholz commended the work of his team.

“The detective started putting his investigation together, the car was recovered in Detroit, and later on we went to the area and found the suspects walking, brought them into custody, and when the detective furthered his investigation, he ultimately put a very good case together with the officers, which was presented to the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office for a warrant,” Buchholz said. “Based on the information we could gather, we feel confident we did get all the suspects.”

He noted there is currently a trend where Kias and Hyundais are being targeted by thieves.

“I’m not sure of the exact (make and model), but those vehicles are being targeted because they’re easier to steal,” Buchholz said. “So if you have one of those, I would definitely suggest a club or some other way to make it harder to steal. There are also crimes of opportunity, where groups of people wander the streets at night checking for unlocked doors, just to steal change or other things left inside the vehicle. So definitely don’t leave any items visible in your car that would make it more attractive to thieves checking door handles. Any items of value, take them from the car with you.

“And if you can, keep your car parked in a brightly lit area,” he added. “If you don’t have a driveway at your home, maybe set up one of those doorbell cameras and park in an area visible to it. And always, always lock your car.”