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News / Clark County News

Suspect went on a crime spree, Vancouver police say, then tried to escape by shimmying across telephone wires

Romando E. Stanley was taken into custody after an hour dangling over Sixth Street

By Shari Phiel, Columbian staff writer
Published: March 25, 2024, 2:30pm
3 Photos
The Vancouver Fire Department was called to help Vancouver police at 6 p.m. Saturday with a man on the roof of Little Conejo, 114 W. Sixth St. The man later climbed out onto communication wires above the street.
The Vancouver Fire Department was called to help Vancouver police at 6 p.m. Saturday with a man on the roof of Little Conejo, 114 W. Sixth St. The man later climbed out onto communication wires above the street. (Vancouver Fire Department) Photo Gallery

What started as a report of a vehicle prowl Saturday ended with a theft suspect trying to escape by shimmying across telephone wires over West Sixth Street in downtown Vancouver for nearly an hour.

Vancouver police say the suspect went on a crime spree in downtown before falling from the wires onto a fire truck and being taken into custody.

Police were called about 5:15 p.m. to the 600 block of West Evergreen Boulevard for a report of a man stealing power tools from a vehicle, according to a Monday update from the Vancouver Police Department. The victim told police he saw the suspect, later identified as Romando E. Stanley, enter a nearby yard, take a bike and flee the area.

A neighbor of the bike-theft victim chased after the suspect, but he dumped the bike in the street and took off on foot, police said.

As police were responding to the theft reports, another officer was sent to the 900 block of Main Street in response to a call about a man who entered a business and took an employee’s cellphone. According to police, when the employee tried to get the phone back, Stanley punched the employee in the chest before fleeing on foot again.

As officers were searching for Stanley, another call came in about a man on the rooftop of Little Conejo, 114 W. Sixth St., Vancouver.

The report said the man was throwing bricks, glass and other items onto the sidewalk and causing damage to buildings. According to the update, police crisis negotiators were unsuccessful in getting Stanley to come down.

Police said Stanley then attempted to shimmy across the street using telephone lines. Negotiators continued their attempts to get him to come down safely; the Vancouver Fire Department parked Fire Engine 1 under Stanley in the street to lessen the impact if he fell.

After nearly 45 minutes, Stanley lost his grip on the wires and fell onto the fire engine, police said. He was taken into custody without further incident about 7 p.m.

After an evaluation at the hospital, Stanley was booked into the Clark County Jail on suspicion of second-degree robbery, second-degree theft, third-degree theft and malicious mischief.

Streets in downtown Vancouver were closed throughout the chaos, which required significant resources from police crisis negotiators, K-9 officers and others, as well as Vancouver Fire and Clark Public Utilities.

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