Fire engine stolen, driven through NE Portland

Multnomah County

The suspect drove the engine more than 3 miles through Portland

A Portland Fire and Rescue engine was stolen from NE Portland Friday evening. November 22, 2019 (Portland Police Bureau)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A man stole a fire truck Friday evening, driving it through Northeast Portland before police officers were able to stop the truck and make an arrest.

The Portland Fire and Rescue engine was responding to a fire alarm in the area of 15th and Broadway just before 5 p.m. Friday. While crews were inside searching the building, a man jumped inside the rig and drove off. The suspect managed to drive the engine 3.3 miles north to North Greeley Avenue and North Going Street before Portland Police officers intervened.

Brandon Vandewalker, November 22, 2019 (Portland Police Bureau)

The suspect, identified as 25-year-old Brandon Vandewalker, was taken into custody at the scene in North Portland. He was booked into the Multnomah County Jail where he now faces charges of aggravated theft and the unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

“I am relieved to know that no one was injured in the dangerous situation that unfolded in North Portland,” said Fire Chief Sara Boone in a public statement. “I would like to thank the firefighters from Engine Three for their quick action and the Portland Police officers for their quick response and closure to this.”

She also said that the fire department would be reviewing their internal policies to make sure that a theft like this one does not happen again.

Police closed the northbound lanes of N Greeley Ave near N Going St while they investigated for approximately an hour Friday evening, however the scene has since been cleared.

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