REDDING: K-9 tracks alleged car thief who fled from stolen vehicle after pursuit
REDDING — Authorities arrested a man they allege fled from Redding police officers in a stolen car, Saturday Aug. 5. The early-morning incident and arrest happened on State Route 273, near Westwood Avenue, in Redding.
After he was apprehended, officers identified and arrested 24-year-old, William Eugene Schreckengost. According to officials, Schreckengost is a Redding-area transient.
After his arrest, Schreckengost was booked into the Shasta County Jail in Redding on suspicion of possessing a stolen vehicle, Redding Police Sergeant Shawn McGinnis explained in a written press release after the incident and arrest.
The incident began at 2:12 a.m., after Redding PD Officer Siipola reportedly spotted a gold Mercury sedan exiting the Shady Oaks Trailer Park at 5812 Cedars Road. The officer observed that the vehicle’s license plate had expired registration tags.
When the officer attempted to catch up to the vehicle to conduct a traffic enforcement stop, the driver, who was later identified as Schreckengost, sped away from the officer, driving southbound on State Route 273 at a high rate of speed.
As Schreckengost fled, he raced through a Circle K convenience store parking lot at 2220 Westwood Avenue, before speeding back out onto State Route 273.
The driver reportedly stopped the vehicle a short distance later and abandoned the car in the middle of the center median; fleeing into the darkness. Additional officers along with Redding PD Officer Jeff Schmidt and his K-9 companion “Abel” arrived to assist in searching for Schreckengost.
K-9 Abel quickly picked up a fresh scent and tracked the scent to a ditch along the side of the highway where officials eventually found Shreckengost hiding.
During their investigation, officers discovered the car had license plates from another vehicle on it and the car had been reported stolen from Trinity County about two weeks earlier.
Officer Siipola positively identified Schreckengost as the driver of the stolen car and he was subsequently arrested.
Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to contact Redding PD officials at (530) 225-4200. Callers can refer to incident file number 17-56344 and can remain anonymous.
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Trevor Montgomery runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News and Anza Valley Outlook and also writes for Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County.
Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg and breaking his back in an off-duty accident.
During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center and Lake Elsinore Station, along with other locations.
Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.
Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren