Bad driving leads to drug bust in Woodstock

If he hadn’t been whipping in and out of traffic on SE 82nd Ave., this wanted probationer wouldn’t have been caught with bindles of pills ‚Äì enough to be a “walking pharmacy”. You’ll only see his story RIGHT HERE ‚Ķ

Officers search this black Acura they say was driven by a man who tried to ditch them in the neighborhood. When he finally stopped here, he tried to escape on foot. He didn’t get far ‚Ķ

Story and Photos by David F. Ashton
What makes a man speed off from a traffic stop, careen through southeast Portland neighborhoods, screech his car to a stop in front of a “troubled” house, and run until cops took him down?

Perhaps he was taking a “dose of his own medicine” ‚Äì police say he was holding enough pills to stock a pain clinic pharmacy.

A not-so-merry chase
It all starts, Portland Police Bureau spokesman Sgt. Brian Schmautz tells us, when a cop on patrol tries to talk with the driver of a black Acura at SE 82nd Ave. of Roses and SE Bush St. on February 22. No major infraction, we’re told–just an illegal lane change.

But, the Acura takes off, circles through the neighborhood, gets back on 82nd Ave., blows through a red light at SE Holgate Blvd., and weaves between cars, driving in the center lane, near SE Foster Rd., and then heads west. From there, the driver cuts through a parking lot, and zigzags until he ends up westbound on SE Woodstock Blvd.

“We were set up to spike-strip his tires at SE 52nd Ave.,” Sgt. Craig Mendenhall tells us on scene. “But, he cuts across the street, comes to a sudden stop, facing the traffic–here in the 6100 block of SE Woodstock Blvd.”

Ordering the suspect to stop running didn’t work. Neither did a dose of pepper spray. A Taser shot encouraged him to comply. Paramedics from Portland Fire and Rescue Truck 25 are called to check him over in the back seat of the police car.

Suspected crook won’t quit
Instead of giving up, Mendenhall says, the suspect ‚Äì clad  in a red-and-green plaid woolen jacket ‚Äì takes off on foot. A patrol car “pits” [a controlled crash, using the heavy bumper on police cars] the passenger side, to keep it closed.

“The driver got ‘Tazed’ and pepper-sprayed as he attempted to flee,” Mendenhall relates. “Bottom line is he really didn’t want to get caught.”

Officers put the items taken from the suspect on the roof of this police car. They believed some of what they found was illegal, “street” drugs.

A “walking pharmacy”
As officers pat down the uncooperative suspect, they find why he was running from them. “Officers recovered what looks like street drugs and a big wad of cash,” Mendenhall says.

“We don’t know what kind of drugs they are, without testing. It could be meth ‚Äì they’ve been putting meth into pill form. We now suspect he is a street-level dealer. He had multiple bindles of, what look like, different kinds of pills. It looks as if there are about 20 pills in a bindle.”

Portland Fire & Rescue’s Truck 25 pulls up, and medic/firefighters hop out with their kits. Police policy requires that anyone who was shocked with a Tazer be medically checked out. The suspected drug-running driver is checked while in the back of a cop car.

Attention turns to “troubled house”
“We suspect the driver or passenger knows someone who lives at the house where we’re stopped,” says Mendenhall.

As officers searched the Acura, neighbors walk up and watch the unfolding situation.

A woman, who asks not to be identified, gestures to the house, in front if which the suspect stopped. “This house has a real history,” she says, raising her eyebrows.

She was joined by a neighbor who lives across the street, on the north side of Woodstock. “If I’m not mistaken, this car was parked in front of my house this morning,” he comments. “I’ve seen it here more than once, lately.”

Both neighbors agree that the house in question has had a sordid history. “Not long ago, someone died of a drug overdose in the garage,” the woman recalls.

The man said, “Lots of people come and go from this house. Sometimes, there will be several cars parked both in the driveway and up on the lawn.”  He shook his head as he walked off and remarked, “Maybe I’ve lived here too long.”

Cops say this suspect, Dylan Pardue, has three outstanding warrants, is on probation, and his driver’s license is suspended.

Shouldn’t even been driving
Sgt. Schmautz verifies the suspect is 27-year-old Dylan Pardue. “He’s a local resident.”

Pardue is known to local law enforcement and justice community; Schmautz says he has three outstanding warrants, is on probation for identity theft, and was driving on a suspended driver’s license.

Now, added to this list, Pardue is charged with Attempt to Elude; Attempt to Elude on foot; Reckless driving; Reckless Endangering; Resist Arrest; Possession of Methamphetamine; Possession of Methadone; Possession of OxyContin; Distribution of Methadone; and, Manufacture and Possession of a Controlled Substance.

Pardue’s passenger is released, after being questioned by police. “We didn’t have probable cause to take him into custody,” Mendenhall says.

© 2007 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News Service

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