Anchorage police late Thursday arrested a man they say rammed patrol vehicles as he was trying to escape from officers who were confronting him over a stolen truck earlier this week.
Officers responded just after 12:30 p.m. Sunday to the Walmart parking lot in Midtown Anchorage about a man sitting in a black 1988 GMC pickup reported stolen five days earlier, police said in an alert.
According to police, officers recognized the driver as 35-year-old Jason M. Robards. He had a felony warrant for a probation violation related to previous charges of theft, violating the conditions of his release and cutting off his ankle monitor, police said. He also has an additional misdemeanor warrant for violating the conditions of his release, police said.
Renee Oistad, a spokeswoman for the Anchorage Police Department, said she didn’t know what incident those charges stemmed from.
When officers tried to use their patrol vehicles to block in the stolen truck Sunday, the driver rammed his way out and sped off, police said. At least one officer fired a Taser, but it wasn’t effective, Oistad said.
A member of the Alaska A Team, an Anchorage-based vehicle recovery group, recorded the incident on his iPhone after reporting the stolen truck to police, according to Floyd Hall, the group’s de facto leader.
Oistad said she wasn’t able to confirm who it was who made the report.
“We do not release the names of victims/complainants/witnesses,” she said in an email.
The video shows the truck’s tires smoking and squealing furiously while the driver tries to navigate out of the block. As that happens, officers shout at the driver to stop.
“Due to his dangerous driving behavior and the number of citizens in the area, officers did not pursue,” police said.
A new $5,000 warrant — this time for vehicle theft, second-degree theft, failure to stop and third-degree assault — was issued Thursday for Robards’ arrest.
Police said late Thursday they had arrested Robards but offered no details of the circumstances.
The GMC truck was recovered Wednesday at Alaska Tire Service on Dimond Boulevard, Oistad said. It was unoccupied at the time.