Wanted on multiple warrants, felon nabbed in Redding after dangerous, multi-agency pursuit that began in Anderson
ANDERSON, Calif., — Authorities say a wanted felon was apprehended at the end of a dangerous, multi-agency vehicle pursuit that began in Anderson and ended at the Mount Shasta Mall in Redding yesterday, Monday, May 30. Although the car chase ended at the mall when the man continued fleeing on foot, leaving five dogs behind in his abandoned vehicle, he was tracked down and arrested a short time later while walking near a bank on Dana Drive.
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A City of Anderson police officer was on routine patrol shortly before noon when he spotted a gray 2010 Honda four-door with front end damage being driven in the area of Balls Ferry Road and I-5.
After observing a vehicle code violation, the officer attempted to conduct a traffic enforcement stop; however, the driver, since identified as Thomas James Wooden, 24, of Redding, refused to yield and accelerated away from the officer, at which time a pursuit was initiated.
As the pursuit headed north toward Redding, pursuing officers notified other surrounding law enforcement agencies and requested additional resources at which time a CHP – Northern Division Air Operations helicopter was launched to the area and soon began tracking the pursued vehicle from overhead.
Other law enforcement officials, including Redding PD and CHP – Redding officers, along with Shasta County sheriff’s deputies and Cal-Fire law enforcement officials, also began converging on the area to assist in the chase if needed.
Throughout the ensuing chase, Wooden was seen driving in an extremely reckless manner without regard for the safety of other citizens and pursuing officials and was reportedly seen running multiple stoplights and stop signs, speeding and recklessly passing vehicles, and driving the wrong way into oncoming traffic.
Based on the observed driving actions and Monday’s Memorial Day holiday, as the pursuit continued southbound on Victor and was approaching Kids Kingdom in Redding, “officers ultimately discontinued their pursuit of the vehicle in hopes Wooden would not drive in a manner that jeopardized the public’s safety”, Anderson PD later said of the incident and arrest.
With the ground pursuit discontinued and CHP’s H-14 following Wooden from overhead, the fleeing man eventually pulled into the Mount Shasta Mall parking lot where he parked his vehicle before fleeing the area on foot, abandoning five dogs inside the parked and locked vehicle.
Guided by CHP from overhead, officers converged on the mall’s parking lot, where Wooden fled on foot into the mall before he was spotted exiting the mall and running away from the area.
As Wooden fled from officers, he twice crossed over Highway 44 before running into nearby neighborhoods and momentarily eluding officials once again. However, when an officer spotted him in the area of US Bank on Dana Drive around 12:40 p.m., approximately 40 minutes after the pursuit first began, he was arrested without further incident.
After his arrest, Wooden was found to have multiple Failure to Appear warrants for his arrest, including a felony warrant for a domestic violence charge.
Wooden was later booked into the Shasta County Jail in Redding on suspicion of recklessly evading a peace officer, and resisting or obstructing arrest, as well as his warrants, according to Anderson PD officials who added that officers will be seeking additional charges for animal endangerment as well.
Online jail records indicate he remains in custody where he is being held without bail.
No injuries were reported as a result of the pursuit and animal control officials were later requested to the mall parking lot to assist with taking Wooden’s five dogs into protective custody, none of whom were injured during the chase.
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Trevor Montgomery, 51, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and operates Riverside County News Source (RCNS) and Shasta County News Source (SCNS). Both are stringer organizations, providing breaking news coverage and community interest stories for other mainstream media organizations throughout the two regions they serve.
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.