A Montesano man is in custody for multiple charges after trying to elude officers in a high speed chase yesterday.
Hoquiam Police tell KXRO that just after 2:30 yesterday afternoon Aberdeen Police were advised of a subject who had walked away from Community Hospital; where he was pending a mental health evaluation.
A passerby later reported giving the subject a ride from the top of the hill down to the area of the Dollar Tree.
Hoquiam Police say that at 2:45 Sgt. Mitchell was dispatched to a car lot in the 2700 block of Simpson Ave for a report of a suspicious person who had just arrived in a blue and gray older model Ford pick-up and had quickly exited the truck and jumped a six foot barbwire fence into a nearby alley.
Sgt. Mitchell checked the registration on the truck, which returned to an older gentleman from Copalis Beach which did not match the description of the driver.
Sgt. Mitchell and other Hoquiam officers checked the area for the man but could not find him.
Sgt. Mitchell returned to the car lot a few minutes later to find the man sitting in the truck now parked on the sidewalk. As Sgt. Mitchell pulled over, the suspect rapidly accelerated out into traffic, nearly striking the patrol car.
Hoquiam Police say that as he entered Simpson Avenue, he lost control of the truck and nearly struck a passing car.
As Sgt. Mitchell attempted to stop the pick-up the man accelerated and weaved back and forth between both lanes and around other traffic at a high rate of speed.
The sergeant was forced to slow for heavier traffic in the 3000 block, but the pick-up driver avoided traffic by driving down the parking strip and then up onto the sidewalk.
Hoquiam Police say that upon entering Aberdeen the driver weaved from sidewalk to sidewalk around other traffic.
The suspect approached Aberdeen Corporal Snodgrass who was parked on the side of the street getting ready to deploy spike-strips to stop the truck when the suspect passed by the his patrol car at a high rate of speed, only missing the side of the car by inches.
The suspect lost control at the corner where Simpson Avenue changes to Park Street and struck the rear of a green Jeep.
Sgt. Mitchell attempted to cut-off the pick-up, but the suspect shifted into reverse and careened across both lanes of traffic, over an adjacent grass strip and into the corner parking lot near the old middle Swanson’s store. The driver continued in reverse until he struck the corner of an unoccupied U-Haul truck.
Sgt. Mitchell used his patrol car push-bars to pin the side of the truck to prevent the man from trying drive off.
The suspect, a 23-year Montesano man was pulled from the truck and taken into custody; he was not injured.
The occupants of the green Jeep were checked by Aberdeen Fire Department, but were not injured.
It was determined the suspect arrested was the same person who had earlier left the hospital.
Officers discovered the pick-up had been stolen from the parking lot of the PUD office after he had left the hospital. The truck owner had left his keys in the ignition when he went inside to pay his power bill.
Hoquiam officers were later advised the same suspect had forced his way into a home in the 2700 block of Aberdeen Avenue in Hoquiam between the time he stole the truck and led Sgt. Mitchell on the pursuit.
The homeowner was concerned as the suspect had been acting strangely and refused to leave, demanding to use the phone. The suspect never made a call and left after a few minutes.
Aberdeen PD is investigating the stolen vehicle and related traffic collisions; Hoquiam PD is investigating the trespass at the home and the felony attempt to elude a pursuing police vehicle.
The suspect was booked at the Grays Harbor County Jail, where he had just been released that morning after serving his sentence on prior offenses.
Aberdeen PD and Hoquiam PD are coordinating all the charges against the suspect with the Grays Harbor County Prosecutor.