Springfield, Ore. – On Saturday night at 7:35pm Officers of the Springfield Police Department responded to a report of a shoplifting theft at Walmart. 2 suspects fled the store after being confronted by employees. Officers located the suspects a few blocks away and attempted to stop them.
One cooperated, the other ran from the scene. The first suspect was quickly taken into custody. Additional responding Officers began searching for the second suspect. On several occasions citizens waved down Officers and pointed to where the suspect had run. Because of these citizens, Officers located the suspect, IZAAK VAUGHN WATSON, behind Burrito Boy on Olympic St. He came out of hiding and began running again. As he rounded the corner toward Sonic, he ran alongside cars waiting in the drive thru.
Seeing the Officer closing in on the suspect, a customer opened his driver’s door as the suspect ran by which slowed the suspect enough for the Officer to safely take him into custody. The Officer later commented “This is why I love working in this city. Our citizens are so great!” While we do NOT recommend citizens directly engage with suspect’s because we never know how they will react, we greatly appreciate community involvement in helping us solve cases and prevent crime. From the initial callers who provided excellent descriptions, to the bystanders who pointed us in the direction the suspect ran, to the citizen who slowed the suspect during the foot chase, this case demonstrates the true meaning of community involved policing. Without their collective help, the suspect may not have been apprehended.
As Officers worked through their investigation, they learned that IZAAK VAUGHN WATSON was wanted by SPD for strangulation in connection to an earlier domestic violence incident in December. He was transported and lodged at the Lane County Jail.
(information from SPD)