ELMA, Wash. - The Grays Harbor County Sheriff's department is unravelling several cases involving a number of stolen firearms, and property crimes in the East County, in all 5 have been arrested.
Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate tells us over the weekend deputies found and arrested a 22 year old Elma man and 21 year old Montesano man from an Elma home, both were later tied to a vehicle theft in July.
Shumate said yesterday at around 10:40 am, deputies responded to a report of subjects burning electrical wiring under the Wildcat Creek Bridge on SR 12 near SR 8. Deputies were aware of recent wire thefts from burglaries that occurred to the Grays Harbor County Fair Grounds. Investigators had also developed information that the potential suspects of those burglaries were individuals who had been arrested in the past for stealing firearms, and firearms had been taken from some of the residential burglaries near Elma, to include the home on Stamper Road.
Upon contact at the Wildcat Creek Bridge, deputies located numerous individuals who were actively burning the insulation off of electrical wiring. Deputies had ordered the subjects to the ground however one individual fled to the west toward the Pacific Pride fuel station. This subject, a 29 year old McCleary man, was well known to the deputies for numerous crimes that he had committed in the past. Some of those crimes included the theft of firearms and possession of illegal drugs. This subject was also known to be assaultive toward officers.
The man ran to a running green colored Nissan Altima and got into the passenger side. The driver of the vehicle then attempted to flee the scene however Deputies blocked the exit of the station and attempted to order the passenger out of the vehicle. The man refused to comply with the orders and moved furtively throughout the vehicle. He was also trying to get the driver to put the vehicle in gear. Knowing that the man had stolen firearms in the past, and was a suspect of recent thefts, deputies had to kick the window of the passenger door out in order to apprehend the suspect.
During the arrest of the suspect, the man swallowed a bindle of what deputies believed to be methamphetamines. The man was eventually transported to Summit Pacific Hospital in Elma and remained there overnight for observation. He was booked earlier this morning on numerous charges. In addition to the 29 year old McCleary man, a 31 year old East County transient, and a 28 year old Lacey man were arrested.
A number of stolen items have been recovered to include firearms. At this point, investigators are continuing to identify additional suspects and locate additional stolen items.