Wild Chase Ends In Arrest, Myriad Charges – June 26, 2012
EPD Press Release
On Tuesday, June 26 about 11:28 a.m., officers from the Eureka Police Department were dispatched to the 2600 block of Union Street on a report of a car jacking that had just occurred.
The subsequent investigation revealed the victim had just arrived at his residence and backed into his driveway. The victim unloaded his six-month-old child and car seat and noticed a male subject standing directly behind him. The male subject demanded the victim’s keys to his vehicle. The victim initially told the suspect “No,” and backed away. The suspect moved towards the victim, who was holding his child, and told the victim he better give him the keys.
The victim, now fearing for the safety of his child, gave the suspect the keys. The suspect entered the victim’s vehicle and drove away from the residence. The suspect and vehicle description were broadcast to all EPD Officers and sent via teletype to all Humboldt County Agencies.
Approximately 20 minutes after the initial report was taken, an EPD Officer, who had positioned himself near the northbound lanes of the Slough Bridge, observed a vehicle matching the victim vehicle’s description traveling north on U.S. Highway 101 over the bridge. The Officer caught up to the vehicle as it was approaching Murray Field and confirmed it was the victim’s stolen vehicle. The officer attempted to conduct an enforcement stop on the vehicle and the vehicle fled from the officer at a high rate of speed. The officer pursued the vehicle as it traveled between 80 to 100 mph on U.S. 101.
Given the speeds and the driver’s erratic driving, the officer discontinued the pursuit near the Bracut exit. The officer continued to follow the vehicle, at a substantial distance, updating the vehicle’s location for allied agencies, until the vehicle was last seen near the Sunset exit in Arcata.
Officers from the California Highway Patrol, who were monitoring the pursuit and subsequent directions of travel, staged at the U.S. 101/ State Route 299 interchange to intercept the vehicle. As the vehicle approached their location, it turned east onto SR 299. The CHP officers began pursuing the vehicle as it traveled east on SR 299 at speeds in excess of 100 mph.
A sergeant with CHP set up a spike strip at the Mad River Bridge and the suspect vehicle drove over them, causing the tires to deflate. The suspect then took the Essex Road exit at a high rate of speed, struck a street sign before eventually stopping. The suspect was able to flee on foot from the vehicle and was pursued by CHP officers. The suspect was detained a short distance from the vehicle.
The suspect, Eli Grover Aubrey, 38, of Eureka, was taken into custody on myriad charges. The arresting CHP officer noticed Aubrey was exhibiting signs of intoxication from alcohol and possibly drugs. Aubrey reported a complaint of pain to one of his knees and was later examined at the hospital.
During a field “show-up” the victim was able to positively identify Aubrey as the suspect who stole his vehicle. There were no officers injured during this incident.
Aubrey was arrested and booked at the Humboldt County Jail on suspicion of car jacking, robbery, felony evading a peace officer, possession of stolen property, resisting arrest, driving while under the influence of alcohol/drugs, driving while unlicensed, and hit and run. CHP learned that when the vehicle was exiting Hwy 101 onto SR 299 it clipped another motorist which was traveling north on U.S. 101. The motorist was uninjured and the vehicle wasn’t being actively pursued at this time. Aubrey also returned on active parole out of Humboldt County and was booked on a parole hold.
The victim’s vehicle sustained moderate damage and was towed from the scene.