By Chris Klint
Channel 2 News
1:06 PM AKST, March 4, 2013
A Willow man learned from Alaska State Troopers Saturday that he was at the wheel of a stolen pickup truck, during a traffic stop which ended with the female passenger who allegedly gave him the keys behind bars.
According to an AST dispatch Monday, a moving and equipment violation prompted Bureau of Highway Patrol troopers to stop a 1999 Ford Ranger at Mile 49 of the Parks Highway, at about 10:30 p.m. Saturday.
Troopers eventually discovered that the Ranger, driven by 52-year-old driver Michael A. Hansen, had been reported as stolen Friday -- and that Wasilla passenger Shannon W. Bartholomew, 33, was “in control of the Ford.”
“Hansen was released from the scene without incident after it was determined he was unknowingly driving the stolen Ford,” troopers wrote. “It was determined Bartholomew had taken the vehicle from a residence and then asked Hansen to drive after they met at a party.”
Bartholomew was arrested for first-degree vehicle theft and taken to the Mat-Su Pretrial Facility, where she was held on $5,000 cash bail. AST spokesperson Megan Peters pointed out that she may have acted responsibly on at least one level in the incident.
“Well, at least she didn’t get a DUI,” Peters said.
Hansen didn’t quite get off scot-free, however: troopers say his Washington state driver’s license was suspended, and he was issued a misdemeanor citation to appear in court.
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