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Sept. 24, 2022

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Stolen pickup prompts big law enforcement response on state Highway 500

By , Columbian staff writer

A stolen pickup spotted speeding Tuesday night on state Highway 500 prompted a large law enforcement response after it was mistaken for a similar-looking stolen pickup believed to have guns inside.

Clark County sheriff’s deputies followed a westbound white Ford Ranger at about 9:30 p.m. that was speeding as it entered the highway from Northeast 54th Avenue, according to a probable cause affidavit.

Dispatch advised deputies that Vancouver police reported within the last few minutes that a white Ford Ranger was stolen with a 9 mm handgun and a shotgun inside. When deputies caught up to the truck, Deputy Christopher Fisk noted it was traveling 86 mph, the affidavit states.

The truck began to slow down and turn from Highway 500 onto Northeast 42nd Avenue. The truck then drove across the concrete median and came to a stop against a berm, court records state.

The driver, later identified as Eduardo Hernandez Gomez, began to exit the truck. Fisk stated in the affidavit he radioed that he believed Hernandez Gomez was going to run from the truck. The deputy exited his vehicle and ordered Hernandez Gomez to show him his hands.

Hernandez Gomez, 27, complied with deputies’ commands, according to the affidavit. He was arrested when other law enforcement officers arrived at the scene.

“During the investigation, it was determined the vehicle I was out with was not the stolen (pickup) from Vancouver police,” Fisk wrote in the affidavit.

A large police response could be seen on the side of the highway, with multiple officers aiming their guns at the truck. The police activity delayed traffic in both directions of Highway 500, and a traffic alert from the Washington State Department of Transportation was cleared at 9:51 p.m.

The truck returned as being stolen out of Portland, according to the affidavit.

Hernandez Gomez, no address listed, appeared Wednesday in Clark County Superior Court on suspicion of possession of a stolen vehicle and attempt to elude. His bail was set at $3,000, and he is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 10.

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