According to a Press Release from the Eureka Police department, dated August 10, 2012:
On 8-10-2012 at about 1:08 am, Officers of the Eureka Police Department responded to the drive thru of Burger King (417 S Street) for a possible vehicle theft that had just occurred.
Upon arrival, officers contacted the victim who relayed the following information. The victim said she had picked up three male subjects in the drive thru of Burger King. The three subjects were unknown to her. As she was traversing the drive thru, the subjects began fighting with one another. The victim demanded the subjects exit her vehicle. Two of the subjects complied with the victim’s requests, but the third subject, identified as Brian Ray Mello (34 years old of Eureka), refused to exit the vehicle. The two other subjects then attempted to remove Mello from the vehicle, but he physically resisted their efforts.
Due to Mello’s refusal to exit and the physical altercation taking place between the three subjects, the victim became fearful of her safety and stepped out of her vehicle. She continued to demand that Mello exit the vehicle. Mello climbed into the driver’s seat of the vehicle and began driving away. The victim grabbed the vehicle in an attempt to stop Mello from stealing her car. After several feet, the victim lost her grasp on the vehicle and Mello sped away.
Officers searched the area for the victim’s vehicle, locating it moments later at 6th and Myrtle Streets. Mello was in possession of the vehicle and was detained without incident. A field identification was conducted and Mello was positively identified as the subject whom had stolen the vehicle. Mello was taken into custody and booked into the Humboldt County Correctional Facility on charges of carjacking and vehicle theft. Mello is being held on $250,000 bail.
The Eureka Police Department reminds citizens to be mindful of their personal safety when traveling and strongly recommends not picking up persons unknown to you.