An Aberdeen man was captured on dash camera footage stealing, learning to drive, and then wrecking a vehicle from a grocery store parking lot Sunday, according to Aberdeen police. Commander Dale Green with the Aberdeen Police Department said in a news release that it was reported just after 11:30 p.m. on Sunday. A man reported the theft of his vehicle from the parking lot of the Safeway on West Heron Street. As officers were responding, another 911 caller reported a vehicle collision in the 200 block of North Macfarlane Street near Miller Junior High school in South Aberdeen.
Multiple officers responded to both locations, E911 dispatchers reported that the driver of the colliding vehicle on Macfarlane had fled the scene. Green said a Cosmopolis police officer located and detained the suspect nearby in Pioneer Park. The stolen vehicle sustained extensive front end damage. The dash camera footage showed the driver entering a sharp corner at over 40 MPH before sliding into a gravel parking lot and two parked vehicles.
The suspect, a 31 year-old Aberdeen resident, was identified and arrested for theft of a motor vehicle and driving while license suspended in the 3rd degree.
The victim told The Daily World that they had just gotten off work and stopped at the store for a bag of potatoes, they were gone for less than 10 minutes. Their dash camera footage shows that the car, a 2002 Ford Focus, only sits in the busy parking lot for a minute before the suspect crosses in front, gets in, and drives away after fumbling with the standard transmission for a moment.
The camera records the vehicle speed over the Chehalis River Bridge and to the driveway of a home on East Huntley Street. The driver asks himself if the car has reverse when he tries to turn around. The car speeds down Huntley and onto South Evans Street where it reaches speeds of 70 MPH before sliding off of the sharp corner near Miller Junior High School.
You hear the man asking himself, “I wrecked it didn’t I?” as he attempts to restart the vehicle after the collision. A man is seen responding and removing the suspect from the vehicle while another woman is heard in the background asking to call 911.
Officers noted that the dash camera recorded speed and that the video, totaling about 10 minutes, shows speeds of over 70 MPH in South Aberdeen while the driver runs red lights and stop signs. The suspect was also charged with reckless driving. Green said the man was booked in the city of Aberdeen Jail and will be taken to the Grays Harbor County Jail.