COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL COURTHOUSE — A Minnesota man told police he stole a Chicago water truck Wednesday because he wanted "to get the f--- out of here," court records show.
Jacob Barth, 32, was denied bail Thursday on a charge of vehicular hijacking.
According to police, Barth stole the blue 2017 dump truck about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday after a city worker got out of the vehicle to check potholes in the 4700 block of South Princeton Avenue.
The worker spotted Barth and tried unsuccessfully to stop him, prosecutors said. During a struggle, the 57-year-old worker was cut on his right hand. He needed several stitches, according to court testimony.
Assistant State's Attorney Erin Antonietti in court Thursday said several witnesses saw Barth attempting to take other vehicles Wednesday morning before settling on the city truck.
Police stopped the truck in Roseland and arrested Barth about 8:57 a.m. He told officers, "I stole the truck to get the f--- out of here," according to an arrest report.
During a bond hearing at the Leighton Criminal Courthouse, 2650 S. California Ave., Barth's public defender said Barth lives in Minnesota, but has been staying with his parents. Barth and his wife are separated with two children, ages 3 and 5.
The attorney noted that Barth has a degree in marketing and has worked in landscaping for the past eight years.
Cook County Judge Stephanie Miller on Thursday said Barth poses "a real and present threat" based on the city worker's injuries and the fact that several witnesses claimed they saw Barth trying to take other cars.
Bail was denied.
According to court records, Barth is also facing a pending misdemeanor case in Cook County for criminal trespassing and criminal damage to property. Details of that case were not immediately available.
He has a prior drug conviction from Minnesota, prosecutors said.