Police ID men arrested after Wednesday burglary, carjacking case

Devin Kelly,Tegan Hanlon
An Anchorage Police officer and his K-9 Unit dog arrive to aid in the search for a burglary, carjacking suspect near the corner of Eagle Street and 48th Avenue on Wednesday, February 12, 2014.
Bob Hallinen
Anchorage Police officers search for a burglary, carjacking suspect at a house on Togiak Circle on Wednesday, February 12, 2014.
Bob Hallinen

More details emerged Thursday surrounding the police chase that left a police cruiser smashed and two men in custody Wednesday night.

Clay Millhouse, 28, and William Hopster, 29 were in the Anchorage jail after the nearly four-hour pursuit.

The incident started as a call reporting a South Anchorage burglary in progress around 2:48 p.m. Suspects fled from the residence in a stolen pick-up truck later spotted in Midtown at the Extended Stay America, 700 E. 34th Avenue.

Police apprehended Millhouse after a foot chase near the hotel. He was detained on two probation violation warrants stemming from prior arrests in 2004 and 2006 for robbery and theft, said Dani Myren, police spokeswoman.

However, Hopster's night continued, police said.

According to the charges, officers found him near the open door of the stolen pick-up truck. When he saw police, he fled around the east side of the building and through the parking lot west of the hotel. Hopster then allegedly attempted to break into a white, locked pick-up truck, but failed and continued running with police in pursuit.

Just as officers were approaching, an Oldsmobile Bravada sped backwards with Hopster at the wheel, charges said.

"Officer Richard Sargent had to run out of the way to avoid being struck," the charges read. "Sargent feared that the vehicle would back over him as he nearly lost his footing on the ice."

The owner of the Oldsmobile later told police that he was leaving work and walking to his car when Hopster approached him, raised a semi-automatic handgun to his chest and demanded the car keys.

Meanwhile, Hopster sped out of the parking lot and was boxed in and rammed by two Anchorage police vehicles.

An amateur video, taken from a nearby building, shows a cruiser and police SUV pinning the maroon Olds against the building. The officers, one with a barking K-9, then jump out of their cars, guns trained on the driver of the Bravada.

Undeterred, the driver steps on the gas, rams the police cruiser, plows over a median and drives back on to the street.

Charges said Hopster caused more than $500 in damage to the police vehicle.

Officers later found the carjacked Bravada near Togiak Circle and arrested Hopster in the area around 6:30 p.m. Police found ammo in the front passenger seat and a pistol magazine near the emergency brake on the driver's side, the charges said. Myren said Wednesday that Hopster was contacted by phone before telling police his location. SWAT personnel also were involved in the search.

Hopster faces charges for robbery, assault, vehicle theft, criminal mischief and failure to stop at direction of a peace officer, Myren said.

"Hopster denied being involved in any of the above detailed charges and stated the 'true suspect looks exactly like him and uses his ID,' " charges said.

Myren said the burglary is still under investigation and additional charges may be pending.

Reach Tegan Hanlon at thanlon@adn.com or 257-4589 and Devin Kelly at dkelly@adn.com or 257-4314.