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Zion couple don’t get far in booted car

CarinRios 19 Ziwas charged with theft battery after trying drive away with boot still attached her vehicle Gurnee. | Special

Carina Rios, 19, of Zion was charged with theft and battery after trying to drive away with a boot still attached to her vehicle in Gurnee. | Special to Sun-Times Media

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Updated: August 3, 2011 5:47PM

How far can a car that’s been booted drive before police arrive? Not far.

That’s what a Zion couple learned Sunday when they parked in the parking lot of a shopping center across the street from Six Flags Great America.

An employee of the company charged with making sure only shopping center customers park in the lot saw Carina Rios, 19, and Alejandro Alvarez, 22, park their car and head to the theme park, so he placed a boot on one of their wheels, police said.

When the pair returned about 7 p.m. and found the car booted, the employees told Rios how much it would cost to have the boot removed.

Rios said she had no money to pay, and ordered Alvarez to remove the boot. He tried, but failed.

The employee began putting on a second boot on the car until Rios pushed him away. The couple then jumped into the car and drove off, but a Gurnee police officer located it a short distance away with Rios and Alvarez standing outside it.

Rios was charged with theft and battery; Alvarez was charged with theft and criminal damage to property for damaging the device. The boot, which doesn’t totally immobilize the wheel, had a rubber coating that was scraped.

A spokesman for the parking firm said 19 vehicles were booted on Sunday.

Frank Abderholden

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