Update Friday 8:17 a.m. - When Stony Brook Southampton campus police officers tried to pull over a vehicle Thursday night that had been reported stolen a half hour earlier, the driver led them on a brief chase then jumped from the sedan while it was still in motion, according to police.
Southampton Town police said the chase started on Montauk Highway in Shinnecock Hills, and when the driver abandoned the car near the Middle Pond Road and Dellaria Avenue intersection, it kept going, crashing through a split rail fence then into a mooring in a creek that connects with Middle Pond.
Town police called in a Suffolk police helicopter, Suffolk sheriff's K-9 Unit and Southampton Village police to assist in setting up a perimeter and searching for the suspect, who was described as a man in his late teens or early 20s, with a light complexion.
Sgt. Michael Joyce said the car was a Mazda Familia, which the keys has been left in when it was taken. It was reported stolen at 8:22 p.m. from Union Street in Hampton Bays, police said.
Stony Brook Southampton campus police saw it drive by at 8:50 p.m., Joyce said. The search was called off at 10 p.m.
Anyone with information on criminal activity is asked to call the Southampton Town Police Department Detective Division at 631-702-2230 or the Crime Tips Hotline at 631-728-3454, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Update Thursday, 10:50 p.m. - A search with a helicopter and police dogs began in Shinnecock Hills Thursday night when a Stony Brook Southampton campus police officer tried to pull over a stolen vehicle, and the driver ran, according to Southampton Town police.
Sgt. Michael Joyce said the vehicle was reported stolen from a residence in Hampton Bays at 8:22 p.m. The keys had been left in the Mazda Familia, he said.
At 8:50 p.m., the campus police officer spotted the vehicle being driven on
Dellaria Drive in Shinnecock Hills, Joyce said. That's when the suspect fled on foot. A Suffolk sheriff's K-9 unit and a Suffolk police helicopter were called in to aid in the search, as were New York State troopers and Southampton Village police, he said.
Multiple police agencies set up a perimeter in the area of Dellaria Drive, Little Neck Lane and surrounding roads.
Police called off the search at 10 p.m.
"We searched the area and couldn't locate him," Joyce said. He could not offer a description of the suspect.
"The investigation is continuing," he added.
A swarm of police officers are searching around Shinnecock Hills, near Stony Brook Southampton's marine science center on Little Neck Road, but police are not saying at this time who or what they are looking for.
The police activity started prior to 9:34 p.m. A Suffolk police helicopter is aiding in the search.
A Southampton Town police dispatcher said no one is available at this time for comment.
In addition to Southampton Town police and Suffolk police helicopter, New York State troopers and SUNY police are also on scene.
This article will be updated as more information becomes available.
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