LUTZ — A Tampa man and woman went to a gas station Thursday night and tried steal diesel fuel right out of the ground, deputies said.
According to an arrest report from the Pasco County Sheriff's Office, Yannier Arias, 27, and Yomaris Martinez, 20, parked their gold Dodge Caravan over the cap of the diesel ground tank about 8:40 p.m. at Lutz Fuel Inc., 25195 State Road 54. Martinez got out and went inside to distract the clerk, while Arias opened a trapdoor in the van's floorboard and removed the cap.
On June 9, they used the same method to steal 240 gallons of diesel — about $950 worth, reports said.
But on Thursday, the clerk recognized the van, hit the fuel pump shut-off switch, grabbed a pocket knife and ran out.
Arias was about to siphon the fuel when the clerk slashed one of the van's tires. Arias got in the driver's seat and fled, the report said, but he didn't make it far. He was arrested about a block away after ditching the van. Martinez was arrested at the gas station.
They both were charged with grand theft and attempted grand theft and were being held in the Land O'Lakes jail Friday.