Buddy Haskell, of Haskell’s Marine in Jacksonville, Fla., goes above and beyond to keep his customers’ boats safe — including chasing down a thief and retrieving a boat before it vanished.
After a stolen truck backed up into Haskell’s Marine and took off with a customer's $45,000 Key West fishing boat Tuesday afternoon, Haskell saw someone driving that truck with the boat still on the trailer and wanted it back.
Haskell told a Jacksonville news station that he and a friend followed the thief and attempted to box the driver in. Haskell said the man took off, jumped a median and raced the wrong way down Atlantic Boulevard.
"We saw the guy driving down the street and gave pursuit and ran him down to Atlantic Boulevard. He didn't know we were behind him, and then we stopped in front of him and tried to box him in," Haskell told News 4. "He went across the median and all the way down Pottsburg Creek and the wrong way down Atlantic Boulevard."
Haskell continued to chase the boat down the boulevard until the person driving the truck tried to race through a gas station parking lot, where he hit a curb, popped a tire and flipped the trailer holding the boat, throwing it off and into the truck Haskell was driving.
Police searched for the driver, bringing in K-9 and helicopter units to search for a man Haskell described as light-skinned and bald with a lot of tattoos and standing about 5 feet 8 or 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighing about 185 pounds. Haskell said the man was with a heavy-set Hispanic woman with long brown hair.