Public Safety

Iowa City man who stole car faces new charges

Cockerham was already in custody for eluding and operating under the influence

IOWA CITY — Already in custody for leading a Johnson County deputy on a chase in a stolen car, an Iowa City man faces now faces charges related to the theft of that car.

According to Iowa City police criminal complaints, an officer was called to 2430 Muscatine Avenue at 1:43 p.m. March 18 for a report of a motor vehicle theft. The reporting party told police that he had left his girlfriend’s car parked and had gone to see a friend. The man told police he heard the engine revving and when he went to back to the car, it was speeding down Muscatine Avenue.

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The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office said the man who stole the car, 52-year-old Daniel T. Cockerham was subsequently involved in a multitude of crashes in the car and drove through a soccer field.

A deputy caught up to Cockerham at the 237 mile marker on Interstate 80 as Cockerham was leaving the interstate. The deputy attempted to pull him over, but Cockerham sped off, ran stop signs and narrowly avoided several more crashes, the sheriff’s office said.

The chase continued into Iowa County, where stop sticks were deployed and Cockerham was taken into custody. He was later determined to be under the influence of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.

Iowa City police said the stolen car sustained more than $10,000 in damages and could be totaled. He now faces charges of first-degree theft and first-degree criminal mischief, both Class C felonies punishable by up to 10 years in prison. Cockerham was already in custody for eluding and operating under the influence.

l Comments: (319) 398-8238; lee.hermiston@thegazette.com

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