A Mexican family is devastated after US tourists stole and destroyed their car in a high-speed police pursuit in Cancun

A US couple suspected of stealing a vehicle at Cancun airport and leading police on a high-speed chase for nearly an hour could be released as auto theft is not considered a felony in Quintana Roo state.

Derek Andrew Vitas and Kristy Shaw of Grafton, Ohio, reportedly stole a latest generation SUV from the entrance of Cancun International Airport this week. Public records revealed that Vitas once owned a Halloween haunted house company and appears to still be involved in similar businesses. Vitas is also listed as the owner of a construction company in Brooklyn, Ohio. Shaw’s employment history was not readily available.

Breitbart Texas received an exclusive interview with the vehicle’s owners, who were at the airport to drop off friends. The victims revealed they were unloading luggage from their vehicle as Vitas and Shaw got in and sped away without closing the doors. The couple drove past roadblocks and security checkpoints.

According to local news outlets, the couple dodged two police checks as they drove from Cancun towards Playa del Carmen. After the second checkpoint, federal, local, and state agencies were involved in the pursuit. Police fired on the vehicle to stop it and eventually had to perform a PIT maneuver to arrest them. At the time of the arrest, authorities reportedly found cans of narcotics for personal use, and both Vitas and Shaw were under the influence.

The victims in the case relied on their vehicle for work and have been left in financial difficulties as they face a lengthy insurance claims process.

Breitbart Texas learned the couple could be released as early as Friday, amid questionable claims that auto theft is not a felony in the state. Breitbart Texas reached out to the Quintana Roo Attorney General for comment. Officials responded that the file was still in the process of being compiled and that Vitas and Shaw would be charged before a “control magistrate” later in the day.

Mexico has a long history of judges and prosecutors dropping charges or dropping cases in exchange for bribes. Currently, Mexico is listed as one of the worst countries in various studies measuring impunity and corruption around the world, such as the Global Impunity Index.

Ildefonso Ortiz is an award-winning journalist at Breitbart Texas. He co-founded Breitbart Texas’ Cartel Chronicles project with Brandon Darby and Breitbart senior management. you can follow him Twitter and further Facebook. He can be reached at Iortiz@breitbart.com.

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