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Caught red handed

Published March 03. 2011 05:00PM

Dumb and Dumber may be the handles police put on a young couple who allegedly went on a crime spree in Carbon County. Wednesday afternoon police in Carbon County placed a "be on the lookout for" a red Chevrolet Blazer occupied by a young male and female possibly wanted in a hit and run and other offenses. The vehicle was described as having the passenger side mirror hanging from the side. A short time later several police officers gathered in front of the office of District Judge Edward Lewis in Jim Thorpe and noticed a Blazer fitting that description sitting across the street from the front doors of the judge's office. Upon investigation they discovered the passenger mirror hanging and realized it was the wanted vehicle. They soon found the young couple who had driven it to the site to attend a hearing and took them into custody. Inside the vehicle police found several stolen items taken from vehicles in Lehighton and Jim Thorpe. Police also discovered the license plate on the Blazer was stolen in Lehighton. The two suspects were handcuffed and taken to the Jim Thorpe police station. It is believed the two may have been involved in the attempted thefts of several vehicles in and around Lehighton and Jim Thorpe. Police were trying to determine if the Blazer was also a stolen vehicle.

Jim Thorpe Police Chief Detective Joseph Schatz said police were dispatched to the area of the Old Jail on a report of a vehicle theft. It was further reported that the actors vacated the stolen vehicle on High Street and fled the scene in the Blazer.

The Blazer was discovered parked on Pine Avenue near Lewis' office. An investigation revealed that Christopher Farley of West Hazleton and Melissa Pankevitch of Lehighton occupied the Blazer and were responsible for the vehicle theft.

They were arrested and charged with theft, conspiracy to commit theft and receiving stolen property. Farley and Pankevitch were arraigned before Lewis and committed to the Carbon County Correctional Facility, Nesquehoning.

Police are continuing their investigation.

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