Shoplifting suspect crashes a stolen car in Eastport Plaza

INCLUDED: MANHUNT VIDEO | Here’s the reason for the massive outer East Portland police callout this week in the Lents neighborhood …

After a stolen Jeep SUV crashes in Eastport Plaza – and the driver flees – officers block off neighborhood streets and a manhunt begins.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Tracking individuals through inner Southeast Portland – suspected of shoplifting high-end merchandise from stores across the city – Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct and Neighborhood Response Team officers noticed two men – one of whom they’d been looking for –In an SUV that had been reported stolen, on Tuesday evening, November 7.

When officers spotted that gray late-model Jeep Grand Cherokee turning into Eastport Plaza from SE 82nd Avenue of Roses at Gladstone Street – at 6:14 p.m. – they radioed for backup from more officers.

The driver of this Jeep Grand Cherokee was clearly driving swiftly when he hit this tree in Eastport Plaza that’s sturdier than it looks.

With Portland Police drones buzzing overhead, the searching for the escaping suspect was on from both the ground and the air.

“Seeing the officers arrive, the subjects took off in the Jeep — and eventually they crashed,” related PPB Public Information Manager Mike Benner afterwards.

Take a look at the extended video of the manhunt for the escaping suspect; and see the person police let go take his belongings from the smashed Jeep:

The Jeep SUV had apparently raced east, passing the former Walmart store and on north on an unnamed access road.

It was found smashed into a tree on the property of Eastport Plaza, facing northbound, just north of SE Francis Street which runs through the shopping center, and dead-ends into the parking lot of the theater complex.

Officers and a PPB supervisor look at video being received from the drones that were helping officers to track the suspect.

“One of the subjects bailed out of the wrecked car, and ran into the neighborhood,” Benner said. “A second subject stayed in the car; that person was detained by officers before later being released.”

That individual was allowed to take – under the watchful eye of an officer – his personal belongings out of the wrecked vehicle, and depart on foot.

As seen from a block away, officers – one with his canine partner — search yards near the shopping center for the suspect.

In the meantime, 26 officers arrived to help. The focus of the yard-by-yard search was north of SE Bush Street, primarily from 84th to 86th Avenues. Two PPB drones were up, flying watchfully over the scene.

After a methodical search lasting for almost two hours, officers did find \and arrest the fleeing man, identified as 24-year-old Trejaan Michael Harris.

Oregon lawmakers have ruled that you’re not allowed to see the booking photo of 24-year-old Trejaan Michael Harris. CLICK HERE for details.

Harris was booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center (MCDC) at 10:43 p.m. – initially on three Felony charges of Theft in the First Degree, Unauthorized Use of a Stolen Vehicle, and Attempt to Elude by Vehicle. He was also charged with five other Misdemeanors.

At his arraignment the next day, Harris found that a judge had chosen to “release” every single one of those Felony and Misdemeanor charges. Nonetheless, Harris continues to be lodged in the MCDC in lieu of $50,000 bail, on a Felony Hold.

© 2023 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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