Truck thief arrested after stealing gas

ST. GEORGE – Utah Highway Patrol arrested an Iowa man Sunday for possession of a stolen vehicle and reckless driving after the man allegedly stole gas in Richfield.

At approximately 2:30 p.m. Sunday, while monitoring traffic on Interstate 15 near milepost 21, UHP Trooper Grant Hintze spotted a southbound black truck traveling just over 100 mph, according to a probable cause statement filed by Hintze in support of the arrest.

Levi Joseph Oelberg, of Mason City, Iowa, booking photo posted Nov. 9, 2014 | Photo courtesy of Washington County Sheriff’s booking, St. George News
Levi Joseph Oelberg, of Mason City, Iowa, booking photo posted Nov. 9, 2014 | Photo courtesy of Washington County Sheriff’s booking, St. George News

Hintze exited the median and began following the truck in order to conduct a traffic stop. He caught up to the speeding truck near milepost 19 and pulled the truck over.

Before exiting his patrol car, Hintze said he noticed the truck was a Toyota Tundra and had Nebraska plates. The truck’s description matched an attempt to locate put out by Cedar City dispatch 15 minutes prior to the traffic stop. The truck had been reported stolen, and the driver was wanted for gas theft in Richfield.

Hintze notified dispatch that he had the stolen vehicle stopped and needed assistance.

“I approached the passenger side window with my gun drawn for safety,” Hintze wrote in the statement. “I made verbal contact with the driver and had him step out of the vehicle, in which he complied.”

Hintze placed the driver in handcuffs and was able to identify Levi Joseph Oelberg by his Iowa driver’s license. Hintze asked Oelberg if the truck was registered to him and Oelberg said it was. However, after running the Nebraska license plate, the truck came back as reported stolen.

Oelberg was arrested and charged with one second-degree felony for possession of a stolen vehicle and one class B misdemeanor for reckless driving.

Oelberg was arrested and booked into the Washington County Purgatory Correctional Facility on Sunday. His bail is set at $10,680.

The Richfield County Attorney’s Office will work with the Washington County Attorney’s Office to add charges stemming from the Richfield gas theft, Hintze said.

Oelberg made his initial court appearance Monday and is scheduled to make his next court appearance on Nov. 17. According to booking information, he has not been released from custody.

Persons arrested or charged are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.

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  • Koolaid November 13, 2014 at 11:24 am

    The bail of stealing gas is higher than worse offenses. What was the bail of the guy in Cedar who embezzled almost $1M?

  • My Evil Twin November 13, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    UNREAL! Has that Officer Hintze never heard of “a felony stop?” Has his officer safety training been forgotten, or was it never given? He approaches a stolen vehicle driver’s window, when he already knows the driver is wanted for larceny. The article says he called for backup. That is great, but had his backup arrived? He is one lucky copper. But I hope is agency will send him for some remedial basic training in officer safety.
    It is very easy to become dead when you are a cop that is operating with H. U. A.
    It is also easy to become complacent when you have put in a lot of years without having been involved in any “real action.” But just because you are in a small area, and you haven’t had to fight for your life yet, does not mean in won’t happen.

  • Zonkerb November 14, 2014 at 1:23 am

    …*.. You spend more time in prison for bank robbery than you do murder… LOL…..
    Ed. ellipsis: …*.

  • Bobber2 November 14, 2014 at 5:35 am

    Silly KOOLAID, I’m sure that Elder who “borrowed” that money had a really worthy reason to do so.

    • Zonkerb November 15, 2014 at 11:18 am

      Oh yeah the Bishop cleared him on that

  • Zonkerb November 15, 2014 at 11:17 am

    Wow can you imagine that.. Stealing gas in a dance free zone.

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