A truck rolled over in Maple Ridge after running the border at the Peace Arch crossing. (THE NEWS/files)

Border jumper alleged to have stolen two vehicles and crashed both

U.S. man arrested after accident in Maple Ridge

An American man who jumped the U.S. border at the Peace Arch crossing in Surrey, then crashed his car in Maple Ridge on Monday was the subject of a police chase.

The 23-year-old is alleged to have stolen two vehicles, and crashed both of them, reports the Bellingham Herald. He is now in custody in King County.

The Washington State paper said the suspect evaded law enforcement through King, Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties, before being arrested by RCMP in Maple Ridge.

According to police, he knocked on the window of a 2006 Subaru Forester, and when the driver got out, he attempted to wrestle her purse away. She kept her purse, but he stole her keys, got in the vehicle and drove off at approximately 10:45 a.m.

About an hour later, a Washington State Patrol officer attempted to stop the Subaru, but the driver sped off with the state trooper in pursuit.

He crashed the car on a dirt road, jumped out of the car, and fled on foot into the forest. Police pursued until the suspect jumped into a river and crossed to the other side.

A Customs and Border Protection helicopter located the suspect and tracked him to a construction site, where he allegedly stole a 1999 white box van.

With the helicopter and police cars in pursuit, he fled northbound on Interstate 5 at speeds of up to 145 km/h.

He ran the border at Peace Arch at 1:20 p.m., and would not stop for RCMP in Cloverdale.

“The vehicle failed to stop. It was not being pursued by ground members, but was under aerial observation by the helicopter from the U.S.,” said Cpl. Elenore Sturko, with Surrey RCMP.

The van crossed the Golden Ears Bridge and was involved in a single vehicle accident. RCMP took the driver into custody. He was taken to hospital in Bellingham for treatment of injuries.

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