Image provided by Kingsport police.
Police are searching for a suspected car thief, saying the victim left their keys in the ignition of an unlocked, unoccupied vehicle as they shopped in a Kingsport grocery store.
The incident occurred at approximately 3 p.m. Monday at Kroger, 1664 East Stone Drive. According to a Thursday morning press release issued by the KPD, the suspect spotted his opportunity as he rode his bicycle past the car.
The man, who was captured on store surveillance footage, then parked his bicycle beside the building, hopped in the 1994 Honda Accord and drove away.
The suspect is a white male, possibly in his 20s, of average height and slim build, with short, dark hair. The stolen Honda sedan is black with Tennessee license plate 297WRD. Police say it had two penguin stickers displayed in the rear window, with damage to the front passenger side door.
Anyone with information on the suspect, pictured as he left Kroger prior to the alleged theft, is asked to contact KPD detectives at (423) 229-9429, or central dispatch at (423) 246-9111.
To deter motor vehicle theft and other crimes, Patton stressed the importance of removing keys and locking vehicles.