UPDATE: Quesnel man charged after police helicopter helps track stolen truck to Prince George

Twenty-seven-year-old Eric Roger Johnson was arrested after the truck collided with a police car

Update:

Twenty-seven-year-old Eric Roger Johnson of Quesnel has been charged with impaired driving, assaulting a peace officer with a weapon and assaulting a peace officer, among other Criminal Code offences, after appearing in Provincial Court earlier today (Feb. 11).

Johnson was also charged with theft of a motor vehicle, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, possession of property obtained by crime (valued at $5,000 or more) and two counts of failing to stop for police.

Original story:

A police helicopter was needed to track down the driver of a pickup truck stolen from Quesnel after the driver fled to Prince George Sunday afternoon.

Just before 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10, Quesnel RCMP received a report of a stolen pickup truck taken from the parking lot of a retail business. Quesnel police officers located the vehicle travelling north towards Prince George on Highway 97 and attempted to stop the vehicle, but the driver fled at a high rate of speed, according to a press release from the Prince George RCMP.

“In the interest of public safety, officers did not pursue,” the RCMP states in the release.

Prince George RCMP, with the assistance of the RCMP’s Air 3 helicopter, located the vehicle near Red Rock, approximately 30 kilometres south of Prince George. Once again, the driver refused to stop for police, and the vehicle was tracked into Prince George.

Just before 4 p.m., several police officers intercepted the vehicle near the southwest end of Massey Drive in Prince George. While attempting to evade police, the stolen vehicle collided with a marked police car, according to the press release.

The driver, a 27-year-old Quesnel resident who was the vehicle’s lone occupant, was arrested without further incident.

Police say alcohol was a factor.

As a precaution, the suspect was transported to hospital to be checked by medical personnel.

No police officers were injured.

The driver was held in custody overnight and will appear in Provincial Court later today.

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