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The Bizarre World of Florida

14-year-old kid, who took dad’s car for a joyride into a lake, is so grounded August 17, 2012


A Brevard County teenager is in a whole lot of trouble after driving his father’s car into a lake early Thursday morning.

The 14-year-old and his girlfriend managed to escape with minor injuries, but now the teen faces some serious charges — brought on by his own dad.

Only visible by its bumper, a police dive team searched the small lake for a white Dodge Intrepid.

Palm Bay police said the teen stole his father’s car and took it on a 3 a.m. joyride with his 18-year-old girlfriend at Palm Bay Regional Park.

That, police said, was when the boy lost control and ended up driving into the lake.

The boy’s mother, said she was just relieved that both teens made it out safely.

“It’s about 3 to 4 feet right here, where the car first went in,” she said. “My son said it went in fast and hard, and the water was filling up on both sides, and it just kept getting deeper.”

Water was rushing into vehicle, but the teen’s mother said her son had watched a TV show on how to escape such a scenario.

“He was able to pull himself and his friend out of the vehicle as it was sinking in the water,” she said. “He was able to pull a door open after a lot of struggling with it, and pull her across and pull them both out as the car was sinking.”

Inside the car, police found some fish and the boy’s hat.

The vehicle was deemed a total loss, and so was everything inside, including hundreds of dollars’ worth of computer equipment that belonged to the teen’s father.

Now, the father, is pressing charges against his own son.

“Right now we’re looking at a stolen vehicle, so grand theft,” said Palm Bay police Sgt. Jesse Eakins. “He was on home detention, so you’re looking at violating his probation. Plus, we have several traffic charges we will charge him with. He’s definitely getting punished for this joyride.”

A hard lesson to learn, but his parents said they hope it will help him in the long run.

“We’re very lucky we’re not planning a funeral today, and he’s at home resting,” the boy’s mother said.

After that day of rest Thursday, the 14-year-old’s parents said they are bringing their son to a juvenile detention center on Friday.

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