Wednesday, October 27, 2021
Oct. 27, 2021

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Vancouver woman accused of hitting undercover police van with stolen U-Haul

By , Columbian staff writer

A Vancouver woman is accused of hitting an unmarked detective vehicle with a stolen U-Haul as she and a passenger allegedly fled from officers in Hazel Dell.

Court records say a Vancouver police officer and his canine partner were inside the vehicle when it was hit, and a Clark County sheriff’s deputy standing outside was injured as he leaped out of the way.

Southwest Washington Regional SWAT and Vancouver police detectives were attempting to arrest Ilyssa Smith and Jermie Billimon on May 21 because the pair were wanted on felony charges, according to court records.

Smith, 23, appeared Wednesday via Zoom in Clark County Superior Court on a warrant for first-degree robbery and the alleged assault.

Judge John Fairgrieve set Smith’s total bail at $200,000. She will be arraigned June 4, court records show.

According to an affidavit of probable cause, when officers attempted to arrest Smith and Billimon, 25, the suspects escaped in the U-Haul, but they were arrested in Oregon a short while later.

During the escape, Deputy Chris Mikles said Smith turned the U-Haul toward him and the undercover police vehicle, which had its emergency lights activated. If he hadn’t moved out of the way, he could’ve been crushed between the vehicles, the affidavit says.

Court records allege there was plenty of room for Smith to drive the U-Haul around the car without hitting it.

The force of the crash caused the car to roll backward toward a residence. Mikles was able to get into the vehicle and put it in park before it hit the building, according to the affidavit.

The affidavit does not say whether Vancouver police Officer Rocky Epperson and K-9 Koa were injured.