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New Haven man federally indicted for reportedly stealing Uber cars at gunpoint

Investigations found from March through July of 2022, Ortiz-Tucker would pose as a potential buyer for used cars advertised on Facebook Marketplace.
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Police car with blue lights on the crime scene in traffic urban environment.

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A New Haven man was indicted on charges connected to multiple carjackings that happened during car purchases established on social media and Uber trips.

A federal judge returned an indictment this week, charging Tihaja Ortiz-Tucker, also known as TJ, with carjacking, firearms, and conspiracy offenses.

Investigations found from March through July of 2022, Ortiz-Tucker would pose as a potential buyer for used cars advertised on Facebook Marketplace.

He would meet sellers for a test drive but worked with co-conspirators to steal the car along with the bill of sale, title and other ownership documents at gunpoint, the investigation found.

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: 2 armed carjackings within 2 days of each other reported in Wallingford

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Ortiz-tucker and co-conspirators would then try to sell the stolen vehicles on OfferUp.

Ortiz-Tucker was also involved in two Uber carjackings in Wallingford in May 2022.

In both incidents, the Uber driver would pick up the carjacker in New Haven and drive to Wallingford, where the suspects would take the cars at gunpoint.

Both cars were recovered in the same area of Hamden.

RELATED: North Haven cruiser struck during attempted break-in, juvenile arrested

Ortiz-Tucker was arrested in July and has been detained since Sept. 2 when his bond was revoked.

Wallingford police advise online buyers and sellers to meet in a visible, well lit and well-traveled area for transactions. The Wallingford Police Department has a marked area in the front parking lot for safe, monitored meet-ups.

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