On July 27, 2022, the Newport Police Department was dispatched to the Newport Pawn Shop on the report of a subject stealing a handgun from the business. Investigation revealed the suspect had reached behind a display case and had stolen a handgun while an employee at the business was occupied. The subject, later identified as 18-year old Elijah Thomas Cassens, of Newport, concealed the stolen firearm on his person and fled from the business. After officers left the scene, the business owner called officers to report they located Cassens.
Officers responded to the area of SW 2nd Street and SW Lee Street, where the business owner was attempting to detain Cassens. Officers learned the business owner had obtained information Cassens was attempting to sell the firearm. The business owner confronted Cassens, who dropped the stolen firearm and fled the area on foot. Officers conducted an extensive search of the area, but he was able to escape. At about 8:40pm the same day, the victim business owner called again to report they observed Cassens walking in the same area. Newport officers, along with Lincoln County Sheriff’s deputies, began searching and Newport officers located Cassens on SW High Street.
As the officers attempted to contact Cassens, he ran from the area. Officers observed Cassens jumping residential fences and running through yards. Officers set up a perimeter in the area and began searching the area on foot. Cassens emerged from a private yard and again ran from officers. Officers chased Cassens on foot until they caught him and were able to take him into custody without further incident. Officers discovered Cassens damaged a residential fence during his attempted escape. In addition to the local charges, it was also learned he had an outstanding warrant for his arrest out of Idaho for Robbery. Cassens was taken into custody and lodged at the Lincoln County Jail for the following charges;
Theft 1 Escape 3 Criminal Mischief 2 Fugitive from Another State