Man arrested for stealing car, causing disturbance at church - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Man arrested for stealing car, causing disturbance at church

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SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) — A San Diego man was booked into county jail Sunday after allegedly stealing an acquaintance's car and causing a disturbance at a church.  

According to police, 46-year-old Garrette Cook called another man Sunday morning and asked for a ride to a Mormon church near Mission Valley. The acquaintance agreed and picked Cook up in his Ford Focus at Fashion Valley Mall.  

As the vehicle was leaving the mall parking lot, Cook reportedly became enraged and took the keys from the car's ignition, exited the vehicle and was "acting erratically."

Following a struggle, the victim was able to retrieve his keys and attempted to flee. 

Police say Cook then pulled the man from his car, again took the keys and fled in the victim's vehicle.  

"It's very frustrating because you're trying to help a friend and they've got bigger issues," said the victim who did not want to be identified by name.

Cook then went to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints located at 4195 Camino Del Rio where he again acted erratically, according to police.

Cook is a former parishioner, although congregants told officers they hadn't seen him in about a year.

Witnesses told authorities that Cook was grunting, making animal sounds, asking for help and sweating, which surprised the clergy members who then called police. 

Officers located Cook inside the Ford Focus in the church parking lot. 

Cook reportedly resisted arrest and became violent as officers tried to take him into custody. During a lengthy struggle officers deployed a Taser and were able to take Cook into custody. Cook and two officers sustained minor injuries in the struggle.  

Police say they believe he was under the influence of drugs.

Cook was transported to an area hospital for treatment and booked into county jail.  

The victim of the carjacking was taken to the church to recover his car and said he didn't hold any grudge against Cook. 

"I just, if anything, want to see this person get help," the man said. 

San Diego Police Department detectives are conducting an investigation into the incident. 

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