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Fleeing suspect hits police car, boat

Photo Credit: MULTNOMAH COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE - Christopher Michael Van WartA man was arrested after backing a stolen pickup truck into a Portland police cruiser and hitting a fishing boat on a trailer Saturday afternoon.

Christopher Michael Van Wart, 43, is charged with Attempt to Elude by Vehicle, Attempt to Elude on Foot, Theft in the Second Degree, and a Restraining Order Violation.

No one was hurt in the incident, which began at 2:31 p.m. on Nov. 8 when Central Precinct officers responded to the area of Southeast 21st Avenue and Tolman Street on the report of a motorist passed out in his car.

When the officers arrived in the area, they attempted to wake the motorist, who was asleep behind the wheel of a Ford F150 pickup truck with stolen license plates. The driver, later identified as Van Wart, woke up, locked the doors, and retrieved his keys from his pocket. He then backed up into the marked, unoccupied patrol car while attempting to flee.

A second arriving officer attempted to stop the truck as it was leaving the scene by using a Pursuit Intervention Technique (PIT) maneuver to spin it out at slow speed. The truck went around a corner, scraped two trees and a power pole, and then hit a fishing boat and trailer.

Van Wart ran from the vehicle and was eventually located in a nearby home he is familiar with, where he was taken into custody.

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