For the second time in a year, a San Jose man had his truck full of tools stolen.
Robert Pendergrast told NBC Bay Area Saturday that he called police. Then, he sprang into action, tracking down the suspect himself and getting his truck back.
Surveillance video from a neighbor's home showed a thief stealing Pendergrast's truck in south San Jose Tuesday. Pendergrast said that he called police and met with a community service officer, who came out to the scene.
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As a contractor, he said his truck is critical to his livelihood.
“When someone takes it from you, it’s like hurting oen of your children. It’s that important to me. So, I’m gonna do whatever it takes,” Pendergrast said.
After filing a police report, Pendergrast realized he could use his AirTag tracking device to find out where his truck was. He jumped in his daughter’s car and drove down to Morgan Hill to find it while telling law enforcement what he’s doing.
Pendergrast said a dash cam video showed his own truck passing him, so he made a U-turn and followed the driver.
Pendergrast said that he kept following his truck all the way to Gilroy.
“He stops and jumps out of the car and runs. Within 10 minutes, Highway Patrol shows up, Morgan Hill police, Gilroy police and the sheriff's department all meet me where I’m at,” he said.
Less than two hours after his truck was stolen, Pendergrast said that he got his vehicle back.
But it's not the first time this has happened. Last April, someone stole the same truck and everything inside.
“At that time, it was $5,000 in tools,” Pendergrast said.
Luckily, a neighbor saw someone selling Pendergrast’s tools a few miles away. Police responded and helped him get his truck back.
This time, Pendergrast said he lost about $500 worth of tools.
San Jose Police repeatedly warn about the dangers of pursuing criminals on your own. Pendergrast said that he just reacted.
“That’s it. I’m not going to put up with this anymore. And it never crossed my mind what could happen,” he said.
Police are still looking for the thief that stole Pendergrast’s truck this week.