Three appear in court, suspected in incidents

By Andy Matarrese, Columbian Breaking News Reporter



Vancouver police arrested three people Monday night on suspicion of attacking a man walking in uptown Vancouver and pepper-spraying a woman as they tried breaking into her vehicle near Vancouver Lake Regional Park.

According to the Vancouver Police Department and a probable cause declaration filed in Clark County Superior Court, officers were called to the area of the Walgreens at 2515 Main St., for a reported assault, shortly before 10 p.m.

There, an officer met Dylan T. Holter, who said he was walking south on Main Street toward Fourth Plain Boulevard when he saw a dark-colored SUV without plates parked in the middle of the road.

Holter said it looked odd, but he kept walking past the SUV, according to court records, then heard rapid footsteps coming from behind him.

Someone — later identified by police as Daniel Perez Rodriguez, 24, of Vancouver — punched him in the head. When Holter turned, he saw Perez Rodriguez, who kept swinging, hitting him several more times, court records say.

The attacker grabbed at Holter’s pockets, while Holter kept trying to back away. Holter ran to the Walgreens and called 911.

Court records said the responding officer observed red marks on Holter’s face and a bleeding knee.

About a half-hour later, according to court records, officers responded to a robbery call near 8615 N.W. Erwin O. Reiger Memorial Highway, near the park at Vancouver Lake.

There, Teresa Fish told officers that someone in an SUV had rammed her vehicle. Three people got out of the dark-colored SUV that struck her vehicle, then started pounding on her car windows, in an attempt to break them or pull them down.

She said that the group told her that they had a gun and demanded she hand over her belongings. They eventually got a window open, and a woman in the group — identified by police as Ashley L. Griffin, 19, of Vancouver — pepper-sprayed Fish in the face.

Fish scrambled to the back seat of her car and dialed 911 as one of the men in the group, Perez Rodriguez, threatened to kill her, according to court records.

The police said officers approaching the scene saw a vehicle matching the SUV Fish described leaving the area. The officers pulled it over, and Fish was able to identify the three — Griffin, Perez Rodriguez and Vancouver’s Matthew L. Smith, 35 — as her assailants.

After he was arrested, Smith told police he saw Griffin and Perez Rodriguez try forcing their way into Fish’s car, and that they told him to stay with their SUV, according to court records.

Fish’s face was bloodied, officers said in court records, and her wallet and phone were missing.

Holter was brought to the scene and identified Perez Rodriguez, according to court records.

Perez Rodriguez was arrested on suspicion of first-degree robbery in both incidents. He was being held on $200,000 bail.

Griffin and Smith were arrested on suspicion of first-degree robbery in the later incident.

Both were being held on $75,000 bail each.

All three made their first appearances in court Tuesday. Their arraignments were set for Oct. 19. The police said additional charges may be pending.