In quite a strange story that happened in Austin, Texas last weekend, a thief successfully hijacked a Chevy Bolt EV, but failed to get away with the car because he ‘didn’t know how to drive electric’, according to the police.

Local news reports that a Chevy Bolt EV owner stopped at the intersection of Gynerium Drive and Tom Kemp Lane in Austin on Saturday. Then a man, now known to 28-year-old Cory Allen Patrick, approached the driver’s side of the car.

The owner rolled down the window and Patrick yelled at the driver to get out of the vehicle. The driver rolled the window back up, but Patrick smashed it. After a struggle, the driver reportedly exited the vehicle as “he did not want to die over a car,” according to an affidavit.

According to the document, Patrick then attempted to drive away but couldn’t because” he didn’t know how to drive an electric car.”

The robber later exited the vehicle after a nearby witness reportedly saw the incident and ran to the rescue armed with a machete. Patrick was later charged with robbery by assault, which in Texas is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

Electrek’s Take

Alright, that’s a new level of dumb. I mean, hijacking is probably already the dumbest form of car theft, but this guy is taking it to a new level.

While the actual electric vehicle driving experience is certainly different and can need some getting used to, like the higher torque and regenerative braking. But there’s no way something like that should stop someone from driving away, especially with the Bolt EV.

The vehicle is fairly simple to start. You just need to have the key fob, press the clearly marked power button, and then put the stick shift to ‘drive’, like almost any other modern car with automatic transmission, electric or not.

The report doesn’t specify exactly what was the problem for Patrick, but Electrek’s Seth Weintraub, who owns a Bolt EV, suspects that he might have not press the button on the side of the stick shift to put the car in drive.

It’s not exactly unique to the Bolt EV or electric cars. I’ve driven the Bolt EV on a few occasions and it was never really a problem.

But again, car thieves are not always the brightest people around. We have recently seen another example of that when a group of thieves stole 4 Tesla vehicles from the automaker’s Salt Lake City and claimed that they were part of the “Tesla family” to justify why they had the cars.

About the Author