CRIME

Body camera shows police chase involving man carjacking a woman with a BB gun

May 20, 2024, 3:54 PM | Updated: 3:57 pm

Ioelu Ioelu Toafe, 42, being arrest by Unified police officers after leading them on chase in a sto...

Ioelu Ioelu Toafe, 42, being arrest by Unified police officers after leading them on chase in a stolen car on Dec. 11, 2022. (The Unified Police Department)

(The Unified Police Department)

SALT LAKE CITY — Police body camera shows the moments of a Salt Lake City man’s arrest and questioning after carjacking a woman with a fake gun in 2022. In a trial, Ioelu Ioelu Toafe was found guilty of robbery.

On Dec. 11, 2022, near 7155 S. High Tech Drive, a woman was putting her purse down as she entered her car when 42-year-old Toafe grabbed her arm, pointed a Mac-10 BB gun at her, and pulled her out of her car, court documents state.

Toafe drove away, and police used the woman’s phone that was in the car to track him. Officers initiated a traffic stop on Interstate 215, but Toafe fled from them, according to court documents.

Court documents state that Toafe turned into a dead-end road near 1200 South and 1700 West, where officers stopped him with a PIT maneuver.

In the body camera footage provided by the Unified Police Department, the pit maneuver resulted in the stolen car being damaged and a tree toppled over.

A Unified police officer pointing their gun at Toafe after he was PIT maneuvered.

A Unified police officer pointing a gun at Ioelu Ioelu Toafe after he was PIT maneuvered on Dec. 11, 2022. (Unified Police Department)

Body camera shows Unified police officers surrounding Toafe in the stolen car, commanding him to get out of the car with his hands up. Toafe complies and follows the officer’s commands to crawl on the ground toward them to be placed into custody.

The footage shows Toafe being arrested without further incident and placed into a police car. He was transported to the Salt Lake County Jail.

Toafe on the ground as police give commands to crawl to them.

Ioelu Ioelu Toafe on the ground as police give commands to crawl to them on Dec. 11, 2022. (Unified Police Department)

While in police custody and after reading Toafe his Miranda rights, police questioned him about why he stole the car.

In the footage, Toafe told officers he did not know the woman he robbed and “was just trying to make some money … to make rent.” Officers asked Toafe about the other men who might be involved in the robbery, but he did not know.

Toafe being read his Miranda rights before officers questioned him.

Ioelu Ioelu Toafe being read his Miranda rights before officers questioned him on Dec. 11, 2022. (Unified Police Department)

The footage shows officers pleading to Toafe to tell them where his gun was as they could not find it inside the stolen car, worrying that a child could find it the next day and hurt themselves or someone else.

In the footage, Toafe was hesitant in telling them but eventually said it was a BB gun, and he threw it out the driver’s side window near the Monaco Apartments.

After speaking to police, Toafe was placed into jail for aggravated robbery, receiving a stolen vehicle, being a restricted person in possession of a weapon, and failing to stop for police and drug possession, according to court documents.

Damage to the stolen car after police officers PIT maneuvered it.

Damage to the stolen car after police officers PIT maneuvered it on Dec. 11, 2022. (Unified Police Department)

On March 14, 2024, Toafe was sentenced to five years to life in prison for aggravated robbery, a first-degree felony; one to 15 years in prison for obstruction of justice, a second-degree felony; and zero to five years in prison for failure to stop at the command of police, a third-degree felony.

A jury found him guilty on Jan. 8 after a one-day trial and deliberation that lasted a little over an hour.

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Body camera shows police chase involving man carjacking a woman with a BB gun