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Man thwarts teens attempting to steal wife's car as it was warming up, police say

MADISON, Wis. - (WISC) A west Madison man was able to thwart a pair of would-be thieves when they attempted to take his wife's running SUV Thursday morning, according to a news release. 

Madison police said the man had started his wife's SUV and was letting it warm up in the parking lot of their apartment complex on Petra Place at 7:48 a.m. The 44-year-old man and the couple's children sat in his car doing the same.

Police spokesman Joel DeSpain said the man was keeping an eye on his wife's SUV when two teenagers jumped into the SUV and were about to take off.

The man swung open one of the SUV's doors, which caused the young thief behind the wheel to panic, according to the report. The teen hit the gas while the SUV was in reverse, and the open door smacked the man, sending him to the pavement. The SUV came to a sudden stop as it slammed into a nearby apartment building. The back of SUV crumpled and the building was damaged.

"The teens took off sprinting in such haste, that the driver ran right out of one of his shoes and left his cellphone behind," DeSpain said. 

Police said both teens remain at large. The man suffered scraped knees.

The teens were both described as black and between 15-16 years old, police said. One boy was wearing a white, athletic-type coat. The other was wearing Army fatigue-style pants. 

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