A man suspected of trying to steal a catalytic converter and possibly wheels from a car parked outside a Mountlake Terrace senior living facility led police on a pursuit through the city before being apprehended on Interstate 5 near Lynnwood Thursday.
The incident began shortly after 1:30 p.m. May 6, when an employee of the Vineyard Park senior living facility — located at 23008 56th Ave. W. — went to check on a suspicious person in the parking lot. He observed a man standing between his vehicle and a dark BMW with no license plates. The employee asked the male subject to leave the private property and while walking to the passenger side of his vehicle noticed that a car jack was underneath it with an impact gun and wheel lock removal tool next to it.
The male victim believed at that point the suspect was trying to steal his car and yelled for another employee to call 911. The suspect then grabbed the jack and tools from underneath the car. At that point, the victim started videotaping the incident and stood in the middle of the parking lot.
The male suspect got into the BMW and sped toward the victim, who was unable to get out of the way and was hit. He landed on the BMW’s hood and was dragged for several feet until the suspect turned out of the parking lot, at which point the victim slid off of the hood.
Police responding to the incident observed the suspect’s unlicensed blue vehicle speeding westbound on 236th Street Southwest. He turned southbound on Van Ry Boulevard in a reckless manner and then continued to speed westbound on 244th Street Southwest to the northbound I-5 on-ramp from Ballinger Way.
Lynnwood police located the vehicle near the 44th Avenue West off-ramp by the Embassy Suites hotel. The suspect fled from the vehicle into nearby trees before being located and arrested on multiple charges, including assault, hit and run, attempted theft and an attempt to elude police. During a search, police found him to be in possession of eight Oxycodone pills and a small baggie of black tar heroin. The man was complaining of pain in his arms and was going through a withdrawal, so Mountlake Terrace police transported to Swedish Hospital to get clearance before later booking him into the Snohomish County Jail.
No injuries were reported other than minor injuries the victim sustained after being hit by the suspect’s vehicle. A witness had initially reported the suspect was armed with a rifle; however that was not verified. “It appears it was the jack mistaken for a rifle,” Commander Mike Haynes said.
“I would encourage people to call 911 when they observe a suspicious person or circumstances of this nature and monitor the situation without confronting the suspect,” Haynes said. “It is important to recognize potential property damage or theft is not worth jeopardizing personal safety. The victim is fortunate to have not been severely injured.”
— By Nathan Blackwell