Stolen vehicle charges not pursued after 2 men arrested
Two men arrested for alleged possession and unauthorized use of a stolen vehicle will not be prosecuted for those claimed misdeeds — though one of the men will face related charges for burglary, drugs and possession of a loaded firearm.
Police say the incident began around 10:09 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 19, when officers attempted to pull over an allegedly stolen Subaru near Southeast 80th Avenue and Rhone Street.
The car made an "abrupt stop," officers say, and both occupants got out of the car and started to walk away. One man, 38-year-old Christopher Leroy Landaker, was taken into custody at the scene.
But authorities say the other man — Nathan Daniel Perkins, 36 — lit off on foot. Officers set up a cordon and began to search the area when dispatch received a 9-1-1 call reporting a stranger inside a house in the 8000 block of Southeast Center Street.
"The caller stated a stranger was inside his house and he had hit the stranger over his head with a baseball bat to subdue him," according to a news release.
The man was identified by responding police as Perkins, who was taken to the hospital for a "minor head wound" caused by the homeowner's self defense tactics. Police say Perkins was "medically cleared" a short time later.
Landaker, the passenger inside the car, was arrested for allegedly possessing and unauthorized use of the Subaru, but prosectuors later dropped both charges. He was released Jan. 28 from jail for "time served on a sentence," according to jail records.
Perkins, the alleged driver, also had several charges dropped, but the Multnomah County District Attorney's office continues to press charges of first-degree burglary, unlawful possession of methamphetamine, possession of a loaded firearm in public and interfering with a police officer.
Perkins remains behind bars at Inverness Jail.
Landaker has been convicted of five felonies, one misdemeanor and three parole violations, according to court records. Perkins has been convicted of four misdemeanors.
Oregon case law contains a loophole that prosecutors say makes it extremely difficult to pursue stolen car charges as long as the suspect remembers to tell officers they didn't know the car was stolen.