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Car Thief Stopped By Citizens Blocking His Path

On 05/14/2024 at about 6:02 am, WVCC Dispatch received a report of a vehicle stolen from the Siletz Valley Charter School in Siletz, OR. The owner of the vehicle also reported that there was a firearm stored in the vehicle. Dispatch broadcast detailed information to the Newport Police Department, who had Officers on duty, in an attempt to locate the vehicle. At about 7:10 am, Lincoln County Sheriff's Deputy Antonio Ortiz located the vehicle driving southbound on Highway 101 in South Beach and attempted to initiate a traffic stop.

The vehicle continued driving, turning into South Beach State Park, where Newport Police Officers responded to assist. At the State Park the driver, later identified as 47-year old Randy Johnson of Newport, Oregon continued to drive recklessly, endangering bystanders, until a citizen stood in its path and Johnson stopped the car. Deputy Ortiz, with assistance from Newport Police Officers, conducted a high-risk traffic stop and removed him from the car.

Randy Johnson was taken into custody and lodged at the Lincoln County Jail on charges of Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle, Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Police Officer (Felony), Criminal Mischief in the First Degree, Theft in the First Degree, Reckless Driving, and Recklessly Endangering Another Person.

The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office enjoys close working relationships with local Law Enforcement partners and is grateful for the assistance provided by the Newport Police Department. As always, community members are encouraged to be alert to criminal activity and to report crimes they witness, while remaining uninvolved and at a safe distance from Law Enforcement activities.

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