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Queens Chronicle

Flushing man arrested for rental car joyride

Suspect damaged car at JFK Airport

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Posted: Thursday, June 12, 2014 10:30 am

A Flushing man was arrested last week after allegedly going on a wild joyride with a car from a rental facility at JFK Airport, damaging the vehicle and then allegedly trying to do it a second time in a car from another rental facility.

On June 2, at approximately 7:10 a.m., Port Authority uniformed police officers responded to Hertz Car Rental near Federal Circle, not far form the Van Wyck Expressway entrance to the airport, after receiving reports of a man driving recklessly in the parking lot and on a nearby road.

Port Authority Police said the suspect, identified as Jonathan Eric Schneider, 21, of Flushing, allegedly stole and damaged a 2014 Chevrolet Impala belonging to Hertz.

According to police sources, Schneider entered the Hertz parking lot and illegally gained access to a 2014 Dodge Avenger. After he was directed to exit the car by car rental staff, he allegedly complied and ran to a nearby 2014 gray Chevrolet Impala, also belonging to Hertz, which he allegedly drove out of the rental lot without authorization.

Police say he then drove the vehicle back into the lot, steering it over an obstruction causing damage to the undercarriage of the vehicle, flattening all the tires, and scratching the right-hand side of the car, which was left disabled by the damage.

Schneider then allegedly got out the Impala, left the Hertz parking lot and ran to nearby Dollar Rental Car — just a few yards away — where he illegally entered a Nissan Altima. Dollar staff ordered him out of the Altima and he complied. Schneider remained on scene where Port Authority Police arrested him without further incident.

Schneider is facing charges of fourth-degree grand larceny, second-degree reckless endangerment and third-degree criminal trespassing.

He was also charged with two violations: reckless driving and operating a vehicle without a license.

— Domenick Rafter

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