Pursuit of Stolen Semi-Tractor in Portland Ends with Arrest

Posted on June 10, 2024

Multnomah County sheriff’s deputies arrested a man Monday morning after he rammed patrol cars and led deputies on a pursuit in a stolen semi-tractor. Interstate 205 was closed in both directions between Mill Plain Blvd. and State Route 500 for more than an hour.

Around 9 a.m., the owner of the semi called 911 to report that they were tracking the vehicle in Southeast Portland. The semi was described as a red, 2022 International cab over. It was not pulling a trailer. It is owned by Knight Transportation.

About a half an hour later, the owner reported the semi was in the area of NE Marine Drive and NE Interlachen Lane in Fairview.

Around 9:45 a.m., deputies located the stolen semi parked at Blue Lake Park. When deputies attempted to box-in the semi, the driver rammed a patrol vehicle, forcibly pushing the vehicle backward into another patrol vehicle. One deputy was injured during the collision.

The driver exited the park and drove southbound on NE 223rd Avenue. Because of the dangerous criminal actions by the driver, deputies pursued the semi.

Deputies successfully used spike strips at NE 223rd Avenue and NE Sandy Blvd., and other locations, to begin deflating the semi’s tires.

The driver looped onto northbound NE Fairview Parkway and drove westbound on I-84. The driver used emergency lanes on the freeway to bypass traffic. He then proceeded onto northbound I-205.

He continued north on I-205 over the Glenn Jackson Memorial Bridge, traveling between 50 and 65 miles per hour. Deputies reported that, at this point, the semi’s two front tires had disintegrated and was riding on rims. Several rear tires were also coming apart.

After passing Mill Plain Boulevard, the semi slowed and came to a stop on I-205 northbound just north of NE Burton Road, around 10:15 a.m. The driver and passenger did not comply with deputies’ orders to exit the vehicle.

Washington State Patrol, Vancouver Police and the Clark County Sheriff’s Office responded to assist Multnomah County deputies. For the public’s safety, all north and southbound lanes of I-205 were closed between Mill Plain Blvd. and State Route 500.

At 11:30 a.m., the driver and passenger exited the truck on their own without further incident. Deputies took the pair into custody.

I-205 reopened in both directions by noon on Monday.

The driver has been identified as 39-year-old Jesus “Jessie” Meza-Sanchez, of Portland. Meza-Sanchez was booked in the Clark County Jail on charges of assault, elude, criminal mischief, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, and possession of a stolen motor vehicle. Meza-Sanchez will be extradited to Multnomah County at a later date. The female passenger was not charged with a crime and was released.

The deputy suffered minor injuries and was transported to the hospital to be evaluated.

There were no other reported injuries or reports of damage to cars driven by other motorists during the pursuit.

We appreciate the public’s patience during the freeway closure, and we are grateful for the assistance by the law enforcement agencies in Washington.

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