Tenn. man charged after ambulance theft video goes viral

“They didn’t want to give me a ride home,” Desai Billingsley can be heard saying in the video

By Jessie Forand

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — After a man stole its ambulance, the Memphis Fire Department said it is looking into how the theft happened.

Desai Billingsley, 23, took the vehicle when it was parked, engine running, at a Memphis medical center. He had been discharged from the hospital after being treated for a gunshot wound.

When he was denied a ride home in the vehicle, he allegedly drove off in the ambulance. 

Local 24 reported Billingsley shared his journey on social media, which led investigators to him. The video that surfaced the next day showed him taking the ambulance and items from inside.


“They didn’t want to give me a ride home,” Billingsley can be heard on the video, explaining why he took it.

He was arrested and charged with property theft for an auto valued at more than $250,000.

"This egregious act and irresponsible behavior delayed our ability to respond to life-threatening emergencies and placed the lives of innocent citizens and motorists in danger. We are reviewing this incident thoroughly and will implement any necessary policy changes,” a Memphis Fire Department spokesperson said.

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