MEDFORD, Ore. — Oregon State Police (OSP) arrested a 26-year old Central Point man early Thursday morning on multiple charges following two incidents in which he attempted to escape OSP troopers. Officers say the man has made a habit of leading police on chases, and in the suspect’s past run-ins with law enforcement, shots were even fired.
In the first incident on Tuesday of this past week, the suspect’s driving was so reckless police discontinued the chase. But during the early morning hours Thursday, police spotted the driver’s vehicle and the OSP sergeant involved in Tuesday’s chase attempted to stop it. The suspect again tried to elude as another OSP trooper got in position to assist the sergeant while officers from Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and Medford Police Department were in the area to help.
The vehicle continued recklessly, driving through stop signs and traffic signals, eventually traveling onto Highway 62 where it then pulled into a parking lot. Both OSP vehicles deployed tactical vehicle intervention techniques forcing the car to a stop.
OSP trooper Bill Matson described the technique, “The right front quarter panel impacts with the left rear quarter panel of the suspect vehicle. The intervention allows them to spin out of control, and then to be pinned in on either side by two vehicles, which stops the pursuit. ”
The driver was later identified as 26-year old, Jeremy Ray Rasmussen, from Central Point. Rasmussen failed to comply with the officer’s orders and after police used a taser, he then cooperated and was taken into custody. He was not injured. A passenger was also arrested after his parole officer authorized a detainer to hold him in custody. The passenger’s name is not available.
After further investigation, police found that Rasmussen was not only linked to the previous elude from OSP but was also a suspect in past eludes from other local law enforcement agencies. Last year, he led police on a chase near the Medford Airport and crashed his SUV into a sheriff’s office vehicle. A deputy fired shots into the tires of Rasmussen’s car to stop him. Police had to physically remove him from his vehicle, and used a tazer in this case as well.
Rasmussen was taken to Jackson County Jail on Thursday for charges including two counts of a felony attempt to elude in a vehicle, two counts of reckless driving, two counts of misdemeanor driving while suspended, recklessly endangering another person, and a probation violation warrant for failing to register as a sex offender.
His bail has been set at 40 thousand dollars.