A traffic stop in Hoquiam uncovered an unreported burglary and car theft yesterday. Hoquiam Police Chief Jeff Myers said in a press release that on March 28, 2017 at about 12:36 a.m. Hoquiam Police Officer David Blundred attempted to make a traffic stop on a 1998 Nissan Maxima for running a stop sign. The vehicle did not stop for the emergency lights and siren and continued driving around west Hoquiam streets. The driver was traveling at or near the 25-mile per hour speed limit but would not stop; the vehicle turned down a dead end street and could proceed no further.
Officers conducted a high-risk traffic stop on the occupants of the vehicle. The driver, a 30-year old Tacoma man, and two female passengers were detained by officers. In examining the vehicle, officers observed the ignition was torn apart and the driver’s door lock had been damaged. The vehicle appeared to have been hot-wired.
The vehicle was registered to a home in Spanaway. Hoquiam officers requested the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office attempt to contact the registered owners of the vehicle. When deputies arrived, they found the house had been burglarized and the vehicle stolen from the garage. The owners of the house were in Arizona on vacation and the burglary had not yet been discovered. The victim is a retired firefighter.
The male driver was booked into the Hoquiam City Jail for an outstanding felony state Department of Corrections probation violation warrant. He will face additional felony and misdemeanor charges. One passenger, a 25-year old Lynnwood woman was also booked into the Hoquiam City Jail for Making False Statements to Law Enforcement and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. She may face additional felony charges. The other passenger, a 24 year old Hoquiam woman, was released pending further investigation at this time.
A search warrant was served on the vehicle and a large amount of suspected stolen property, drugs and drug paraphernalia was recovered. The vehicle was packed with personal belongings which were likely stolen from the residence. The homeowners are also missing several firearms; however, none were recovered in the vehicle.
Detectives from the Hoquiam Police Department are working with Pierce County Sheriff’s Office detectives in an ongoing investigation. The victims of the burglary will be at the station this weekend to go through all the items located in their stolen car.
Myers concluded “This is yet another instance in which a “routine” traffic stop resulted in the discovery of a much more serious crime.”