Two Boise men are in the Ada County Jail, accused of stealing two Boise taxicabs on consecutive nights and ramming police cars with the second cab when police found them.
In both cases, the cab drivers reported being robbed at gunpoint of their wallets and left on a roadside by the robbers, who drove off in their cabs.
Boise police arrested two suspects after the second cab theft ended with damage to several patrol cars.
Dustin Meuser, 20, is charged with five counts of aggravated assault on a police office plus charges of eluding a police officer, robbery, grand theft and kidnapping. He is charged as the driver who eluded officers and rammed their car.
Justin Cosner, 25, is charged with two counts each of armed robbery, grand theft and kidnapping. He was treated for injuries before he was booked into the jail.
Officers credit quick reporting by the second cab driver, who picked up the robbers at a business in the 1300 block of North Milwaukee Street at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, for helping officers to quickly track down the stolen cab and take two suspects into custody.
"These cab drivers were just doing their job and ran into some bad guys," said Sgt. Mark Barnett of the Boise Police Violent Crimes Unit. "They stayed calm and were very good witnesses."
"It's very fortunate that the violent actions of the suspects didn't hurt anyone, either the victims or the responding officers," said Barnett, who took the two men into custody early Thursday morning. "These suspects robbed the cab drivers at gunpoint and intentionally rammed police vehicles with no regard for who they might hurt."
The second cab driver called police at 11:50 p.m. Wednesday, after the robbers dropped him off in Kuna. Officers located the stolen cab in Downtown Boise at about 12:15 a.m. The man behind the wheel refused to stop the vehicle, and a short pursuit began on South Ninth Street starting at River Street. The stolen cab rammed two patrol cars head-on and backed into a third patrol car, police said. About five minutes later, officers were able to box in and stop the suspects on South Capitol Blvd. near the Depot. Both men were arrested on scene.
Three Boise patrol cars sustained significant damage, as did the stolen cab, police said.
The other cab theft was reported early Wednesday morning. An ABC Taxi driver said two men robbed him at gunpoint late Tuesday and took his cab. That cab was found abandoned Wednesday morning.