Greek Australian tennis star Nick Kyrgios helped police by using a phone app to remotely track his Tesla after it was stolen from his mother at gunpoint on Monday morning.
Kygrios was inside his family’s Canberra home at about 8.30 am when a masked man dressed in black knocked on the front door, describing himself as “Chris”.
His mother answered the door to find a long-barrel firearm pointed at her, according to court documents first reported by the Canberra Times and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
The man allegedly demanded she hand over the keys to Kyrgios’s green Tesla, which was parked on the driveway outside.
After handing the armed man the keys, Kyrgios’s mother was allegedly marched outside at gunpoint. The man demanded she show him how to operate the Tesla, police say.
“She was escorted outside toward the Tesla at gunpoint, and observed the defendant get into the driver seat of the car,” police allege in court documents.
“She felt at this time that she had an opportunity while the firearm was not pointed at her to run back inside and screamed for help from the other occupants of the house.”
Nick Kyrgios used his Tesla smartphone app to monitor the car’s movement
The tennis player then used his Tesla smartphone app to monitor the car’s movements, giving information about its whereabouts to police. He also limited the car to a speed of 80km/h.
This allowed police to find it about 16 minutes later. They allege they approached the Tesla on a suburban street, with their firearms drawn, but say the man sped off.
They pursued the Tesla through Canberra’s inner north, at times crossing on to the wrong side of the road and reaching a speed of 90km/h in a 50km/h speed zone during the chase.
They ended the chase in a school zone, deeming it too dangerous.
Kyrgios continued to monitor the Tesla’s movements during the pursuit.
The app showed the car coming to a stop in Ainslie, an inner-north suburb. Officers cordoned off the street and a specialist tactical response team pulled in front of the car as the driver was about to leave, blocking his escape.
The alleged offender resisted arrest and was Tasered, police say. He was taken to a hospital and then a police station, where he was charged with aggravated robbery, driving a vehicle without consent, failing to stop for police, driving while suspended and resisting a public official.
Kyrgios’s mother told police that she feared the man was going to return to the house and “blow a hole in the door”.