LOWELL -- Police say they are still actively seeking suspects in an attempted armed carjacking of a Department of Public Works sanding vehicle reported last Thursday.

The Lowell Police Department released a report Monday in which a city employee says two men approached him early Thursday night while he was sanding on Smith Street, and one of them had a gun.

Around 2 a.m. Thursday, the employee, according to police, said he was at the intersection of Osgood and Westford streets, just after two men stopped him on Smith Street, parking their vehicle in front of the city sander. The employee said the men pulled up in a black 2001 Grand Prix Pontiac and stopped halfway on the sidewalk, so he was forced to stop.

"Two guys jumped out wearing black masks over their faces. The driver had a handgun and both were yelling, 'Get out of the car. Get out of the car,' " according to the victim's statement. "At that point, I put the truck in reverse and both the driver and his passenger ran back to their car."

The employee, who has not been identified, said the two suspects then backed off, hopped into the Grand Prix, and left the area at about 100 mph down Shaw Street toward the C. W. Morey Elementary School. The employee said they then took a right onto Harris Avenue.

The employee added that the rear of the vehicle was so heavily damaged the bumper had nearly fallen off and was dragging on the ground.


Police responded to the scene and put out a "be on the lookout" signal to surrounding officers in hopes of locating the Grand Prix. The vehicle was never found, though another city DPW employee reported to police he saw a similar Grand Prix on Suffolk Street with a group of Hispanic men inside. That employee reported the vehicle was tailgating him as he drove and cut him off, so he was able to get the vehicle's plate number. He provided that number to the Police Department.

Another call came in Thursday night from another city worker reporting a vehicle with a matching description was driving erratically. The driver appeared to be intoxicated as well.

The carjacking incident report indicates the Police Department located the vehicle's owner -- a woman now living in Florida. She told police she lent the vehicle to her boyfriend while she is out of town. The brother of the woman, who has not been identified, spoke with officials and provided them with the boyfriend's name. The police report doesn't name the person as a suspect but says they found past reports indicating they had run-ins with the individual in 2010.

The police report says this is an active case and police are looking into obtaining surveillance footage from the area to learn more.

A spokesman for the department could not immediately be reached for comment.

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