West Lafayette Police Department arrests man who robbed hardware store, threw methamphetamine out his car’s window

WEST LAFAYETTE — A man at the center of two West Lafayette Police Department theft investigations was arrested on Monday.

Police reported that, at approximately 3 p.m., a WLPD officer attempted to stop the man while he was driving northbound on US 231 near Sagamore Parkway West. The driver then allegedly disregarded the officer’s squad car lights, threw a bag of methamphetamine out of his vehicle’s window and started a chase.

The man turned north on Morehouse Road to evade police. WLPD indicated that its officers eventually terminated the vehicle chase in the interest of public safety after they identified the man operating the vehicle.

Indiana State Police later found the man and his vehicle at a convenience store near I-65 and US 24, according to a press release. State officials detained the driver and transported him back to Tippecanoe County.

A subsequent investigation helped police identify the man as Austin D. Schultz. WLPD then connected the man to two thefts in the area.

Police reported that a search warrant served at Schultz’s address allowed officials to find power tools that were likely related to a theft that took place at a West Lafayette Ace Hardware store on Aug. 26.

During a search of Schultz’s vehicle, police also found a license plate that had been stolen from a nearby apartment complex.

Schutlz now faces the following preliminary charges:

  1. Possession of Methamphetamine
  2. Resisting Law Enforcement with a Vehicle
  3. Theft (two counts)

Schultz’s trial is set for Dec. 21 in a Tippecanoe County Superior Court.

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