CHINOOK - A series of recent burglaries may have been solved last week with the arrest of a Chinook resident who had allegedly been living on a boat at the Port of Chinook without the owner's permission. Three law enforcement agencies were involved in the arrest.
Tyler J. Pederson, 20, was arrested Friday in Chinook by a Washington State Patrol trooper after he was observed at about 3 p.m. near a boat in the Chinook harbor.
Ron Clark, Pacific County Sheriff's Office chief criminal deputy, said PCSO deputies had attempted to contact Pederson last Wednesday in Ocean Park, but he fled on foot. He said the deputies were unable to locate Pederson, but they contacted and questioned Katrina M. Libengood, 20, of Ocean Park.
The following day, Thursday, deputies again attempted to make contact with Pederson in Ocean Park, and he again fled on foot. They re-contacted Libengood and on Friday he was seen by the WSP trooper in Chinook, who called Long Beach Police Department and PCSO deputies who responded to the scene. Libengood also was taken into custody soon after Pederson was apprehended.
Both were transported to Pacific County Jail. Pederson was arrested for residential burglary, first-degree theft and third-degree possession of stolen property. Libengood was arrested for first-degree possession of stolen property.
The arrests were based on probable cause of Pederson's alleged involvement in several burglaries in Ilwaco and Long Beach and about seven burglaries in the Ocean Park area.
"The case is still under investigation," Clark said. "We're still processing property to find out who it belongs to."
LBPD and PCSO officers' investigation also led them to an Ocean Park residence where more alleged stolen property had been stored. Those items are being processed and, when completed, "likely will end up with more charges," Clark said.
"All of us have been dealing with a tremendous increase in the burglary rate the county and the cities," Pacific County Sheriff John Didion said Tuesday.
"I've always felt we're most effective when we take information we gather from citizens and share it with all law-enforcement jurisdictions. This case is a perfect example of city, county and state agencies working together to best serve the public. With that cooperation, we're able to apprehend people who we believe had allegedly victimized a large number of our citizens."