Suspect evades capture after Burney stolen vehicle pursuit

BURNEY, Calif., — Authorities say a stolen truck was recovered after a high speed chase tore through Burney last night, Friday, July 30. The suspect, who has not yet been identified or located, managed to lude capture after the chase, according to officials.

Last night’s pursuit happened just an hour before a solo-vehicle, major-injury crash into an Oak tree that seriously injured three people. The victims’ injuries ranged from a brain bleed, possible broken back with two compressed vertebrae, and lacerated liver, along with other internal and major traumatic injuries, according to CHP. The driver, a 23-yer-old Fall River Mills man, who was driving on a suspended license due to a prior DUI conviction and remains hospitalized in intensive care, has since been arrested for felony DUI and weapons violations, as well as violation of probation and other charges.

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Shasta County sheriff’s deputies assigned to the Burney Division sub-station initiated the pursuit after spotting a white 2017 Ford F-150 pickup truck that had been reported stolen several days ago.

When deputies attempted to stop the vehicle and activated their overhead lights and sirens the male driver and sole-occupant of the truck failed to yield and sped away from them.

As deputies pursued the vehicle they requested assistance from CHP, who dispatched an officer to the area in an attempt to catch up to and join the chase.

Although the victim’s once pristine truck was left damaged, partially stripped, and “basically trashed”, the grateful owner has said she is happy to have her truck back and hopes that personal items and receipts with names on them will lead to the arrest of the person who stole it and fled from deputies. Lori Carlson photos

Radio traffic at the time indicated the man was driving in an extremely reckless manner, without regard for the safety of other citizens or pursuing officers, and one area resident later reported she was with a large group of individuals who were participating in this year’s annual Ancestral Run.

This year’s local portion of the nationwide run, which has traditionally been a healing event for Tribal members and has been described as a way for them to spiritually connect with their homelands and build community, began in Bieber the morning of the 29th and continues through tomorrow.

“We were doing our ancestral run when we seen him,” Jacqueline Portis of Burney said on social media after last night’s pursuit passed dangerously close to her and others participating in the run.

“There were runners and young children on the road when he went flying by us,” she continued; describing the situation as “very unsafe”.

The chase eventually continued onto Old Dump Road, forcing pursuing deputies to slow down due to the condition of the dangerous and pothole-riddled county roadway.

With deputies having slowed down due to the unsafe road conditions, dust and debris kicked up by the fleeing pickup, the fleeing man continued fleeing at high speed, quickly pulling away from them.

Deputies eventually came upon the abandoned vehicle, which had crashed into trees along the side of the road. The suspect was nowhere to be found and was believed to have fled into the area woods. Although deputies and CHP officers searched the area, they were not immediately able to locate or arrest the suspect.

Evidence at the scene indicated the suspect had possibly lost control while speeding along the rough road and had either crashed or ditched the vehicle into the tree-line along the roadway, CHP Officer Ogden, who had been dispatched to the pursuit and had responded to the scene of the crash, told SCNS this afternoon.

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Deputies recovered the stolen vehicle so it could later be returned to the owner, Lori Jane Carlson; who later said, “You wouldn’t believe where it was when they bailed. There was very little chance someone could have caught them.”

“It’s in pretty bad shape,” Carlson and other family members later wrote on social media of the recovered Ford; adding that when the truck was recovered they discovered the victim’s once pristine pickup was left damaged from the crash that ended the pursuit and was left a complete mess. In addition to the interior being rifled through and trash strewn throughout, the truck’s tool box had been removed “and a bunch of new stickers were put on It.” The pickup’s license plate had been removed and changed as well.

Although nobody has yet to be identified in the theft, Carlson said she is hopeful that various items recovered from her truck that did not belong to her or her family, including personal items from the suspect such as receipts with names on them and/or fingerprints might lead to the identification and arrest of the man who stole her vehicle.

“I have no words for the low life that took my truck,” Carlson told SCNS this afternoon; adding that she had just moved to Burney from neighboring Johnson Park a few days before the vehicle theft. “I totally believe in karma and feel everyone involved will get their paybacks soon enough.”

“This is Burney, after all. People talk,” she added with a wink.



Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 50, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS).

Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County-based newspapers Valley News, Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; the Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County; and Mountain Echo in Shasta County. He is also a regular contributor to Thin Blue Line TV and Law Enforcement News Network and has had his stories featured on news stations throughout the Southern California and North State regions.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 30 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 18 grandchildren.

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