Portland police arrest suspected driver in hit-run crash that killed Vancouver man

Suspect reportedly turned himself in

By John Branton, Columbian Staff Reporter

Published:

Updated: February 3, 2012, 10:49 AM

 

Portland police on Thursday arrested a 53-year-old man who reportedly turned himself in as the driver in a Jan. 28 hit-and-run that killed a Vancouver pedestrian, Jason Lee Grant.

The Traffic Division of the Portland Police Bureau took Jim Dean Patterson of Portland to the Multnomah County Detention Center on suspicion of two counts of failure to perform the duties of a driver, according to a bulletin issued about 5 p.m. Thursday. Patterson is being held on $500,000 bail.

He may face additional charges after a grand jury is convened, according to updated information provided Friday by police.

Police said Patterson appeared at the Eastport Plaza East Precinct Office about 12:30 p.m. on Thursday and turned himself in.

Traffic Unit investigators also released more information about the crash Thursday, saying that Grant, 26, had been walking across Southeast Foster Road from north to south near 70th Avenue, about 7 p.m., and was not in a crosswalk, when he was hit by an eastbound vehicle whose driver fled the scene, leaving Grant to die.

It’s unclear why Patterson allegedly failed to stop and help Grant, Portland police Lt. Robert King said Thursday night.

Investigators also discovered in Patterson’s garage a green 2000 Toyota Tacoma pickup with front-end damage that matched the description police had released before Patterson’s arrest, the bulletin said. Police earlier had told news reporters the pickup’s radiator might have been damaged in the crash, adding that they found a large amount of radiator fluid at the crash scene.

As officers took Patterson into custody on Thursday, other investigators were heading for Patterson’s home to check out a tip given to the Crime Stoppers program.

Police thanked news outlets for their extensive coverage of the crime, and said many tips came in.

Patterson saw the coverage on TV, police said, adding that coverage had a role in his turning himself in.

“It sounds like his conscience, fortunately, got the better of him,” King said.

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