Teen too fleet-footed for his own good, says WSP

'Every time he runs he gets in more trouble,' sergeant says

By John Branton, Columbian Staff Reporter

Published:

Updated: July 28, 2011, 9:50 PM

 

Police are looking for an 18-year-old man who fled from them on foot and escaped — once while barefoot — twice in one day.

Andrey Altman of Vancouver left his wallet in a car the first time around, said Sgt. Thomas Butsch with the Washington State Patrol.

Butsch said, Altman might have been busted for allegedly driving with a suspended license if he’d stayed put the first time; he now is wanted for alleged attempting to elude police in a car — a felony — plus two counts of reckless endangerment of his two passengers and resisting arrest.

It all started about 12:15 a.m. Thursday, when Trooper Ben Taylor turned on his flashers to make a traffic stop on an Acura Integra on Northeast 112th Avenue near Ninth Street.

The trooper had noticed that the car’s headlights weren’t on and its license plate was registered to a Mercedes.

The driver, alleged to be Altman, pulled over and stopped. But when the trooper exited his patrol car, the driver accelerated away into the Marrion neighborhood and ditched the Acura by an apartment complex in the 600 block of Northeast 104th Avenue, just north of Mill Plain Boulevard, Butsch said.

A dozen or so Vancouver Police Department officers helped the trooper search for Altman. Because officers found his wallet in the Acura, and believed they knew his identity, they didn’t make a major house-to-house search at the time, Butsch said.

Officers impounded the Acura, which was taken to a tow yard near the 12100 block of Northeast Fourth Plain Road.

About 5 p.m. Thursday, Trooper Jeff Heath went to the tow yard, figuring Altman would go there for the car.

And that’s where the second foot pursuit began and Altman lost the flip-flop sandals he was wearing, Butsch said.

Altman ran west to 112th Avenue, across state Highway 500 and up 112th Avenue, Butsch said.

Several officers and a tracking dog looked for Altman for about 90 minutes before giving it up for other duties. He was last seen behind some apartments along Northeast 49th Street.

Butsch said the suspect should just turn himself in, adding, “Every time he runs, he just gets in more trouble.”

Anyone with information is asked to call 911.

John Branton: 360-735-4513 or john.branton@columbian.com.