One arrested, another detained in theft of man lift

Two “heavily intoxicated” men allegedly trying to remove a man lift from an Oakville renovation site were nabbed by officers from the Chehalis Tribal Police and deputies from the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office Thursday night, police reported.

The theft was apparently foiled in part by a dead battery.

One, a 20-year-old from the area of South Bank Road, was arrested for first-degree theft and taken to the County Jail, Sheriff’s Office Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate said.

The other suspect, a 23-year-old from Howanut Road, was detained by tribal police near the man lift. He was released pending further investigation, Shumate said. It could not be determined if they were joy riding.

The interdiction began when a citizen called at 10 p.m. to report unknown subjects with flashlights inside a building being renovated in the 200 block of East Pine Street in Oakville, Shumate said.

Shortly after the initial call, the citizen reported seeing two individuals operating a construction man lift away from the building. Members of the Oakville Fire Department also called to report they saw three men with the man lift, the police report said.

Witnesses then spotted the younger man operating the man lift and the other man pushing it. The man lift made it to Main Street, directly across from the fire station, where it appears the battery died. The men fled.

Tribal officers arrived first and detained the 23-year-old not far from the location of the man lift. Deputies arrived and found the other man.

Witnesses later confirmed this man’s identity, authorities said.

Investigators are looking into the identity of a possible third suspect.


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