Florida Man Arrested After Allegedly Stealing Truck Full of Coffins

Florida Highway Patrol arrested a man who was suspected of stealing a truck full of caskets in Jacksonville on Monday.

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office had alerted highway patrol to be on the lookout for a Ryder truck that had been reported stolen from a Jacksonville casket company. Highway patrol located the vehicle shortly before noon on Monday, but when a trooper ran tags on the truck, the driver failed to pull over.

A 25-mile chase on Interstate 295 ensued. Police halted the truck after it exited the interstate and stopped for a red light at the intersection of Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway and Moncrief Road.

Despite being chased for over 20 miles, the driver, who was later identified as 39-year-old David Ayers never drove above the speed limit. "He was not driving in an erratic manner," Bryan added, explaining Ayers had been driving at around 55 to 60 miles per hour throughout.

Troopers arrested Ayers and found the truck to be carrying a load that included three caskets.

"At first I was shocked to see the caskets because obviously when you think caskets, you think of someone's loved one," Sergeant Dylan Bryan of the Florida Highway Patrol told Fox News.

Officers unlocked the caskets with a tool they borrowed from a funeral home located a few blocks away from the stop.

"The scene was…actually two blocks from a funeral home so I walked down to the funeral home to obtain a funeral key," Bryan continued.

He added that his colleagues "didn't know what to expect" when they opened the caskets and "wanted to be respectful with those items" in case they contained bodies.

However, the caskets were empty. In addition to the caskets, troopers found a payment collection machine belonging to a car wash in the truck.

"There could be anywhere from 20 bucks to several hundred bucks in quarters in those machines, depending on how often the owner will empty out those coins," Bryan explained.

Florida Highway Patrol added Ayers probably "ripped out car wash vacuum machines out of the car wash to get the money out."

Ayers, who had two outstanding warrants, was charged with auto theft, fleeing and eluding an officer, and driving with a suspended or revoked license.

Florida Man Arrested After Allegedly Stealing Truck Full of Coffins | U.S.