Woman arrested after trying to steal occupied, unmarked police car


PITTSBURGH - A woman was arrested early Saturday morning after she allegedly tried to steal an occupied, unmarked police car in the Strip District, authorities said.

Ria Buford, 32, is accused of attempting to steal the police car shortly after 2 a.m. while two officers were inside the vehicle, which was idling outside a club on Smallman Street.

According to the criminal complaint, three officers dressed in plainclothes were on patrol near Club Xtaza, which was hosting an after-party for the Wiz Khalifa concert. The officer who had been in the driver’s seat stepped out to take a phone call when Buford walked over to the vehicle and got into the driver’s seat.

An officer in the front passenger seat of the car put his left arm out in defense and began to push Buford out while displaying his badge, the complaint stated.

The officer said he yelled, “Pittsburgh police, get out of the vehicle, now! You're under arrest!”

Buford remained in the running car with her hands on the steering wheel, the complaint stated. She told the officer that she was going to take the car and drive it over to her car.

When Buford refused to exit the vehicle, one of the officers went to the driver’s side and reached for her left arm in order to remove her. That’s when an unidentified man placed both of his hands on the officer’s chest, gripped his shirt and told the officer not to put his hands on Buford, the complaint said.

The unidentified man was tackled to the ground by the officer. He was placed in handcuffs after a brief struggle, police said.

Buford was then taken into custody. She is charged with robbery of a motor vehicle, disorderly conduct and public drunkenness.