By Caleb Hutton
A Bellingham man was arrested Christmas Eve on suspicion of carjacking an acquaintance.
Below is the gist of the police report. Everything in the box came from Bellingham police spokesman Mark Young. It’s all been paraphrased and condensed.
The 50-year-old victim, from Maple Valley, had been “hanging out” with three people in Bellingham for most of Christmas Eve.
At 3 p.m. he reported a passenger in his 2002 PT Cruiser grabbed the keys from him and said he would need to fight to get them back. The driver felt threatened and got out of the car in the 1800 block of Cornwall Avenue.
The carjacker — identified as Steven D. Wages, 48, of Bellingham — allegedly hopped into the driver’s seat and drove away. The suspect hit a curb, flattening a tire, at some point in the drive.
Police found the car at Gladstone and Lincoln streets. Wages was booked into jail on suspicion of second-degree robbery, theft of a motor vehicle and driving under the influence. Officers chose not to arrest the two passengers.
By Caleb Hutton
BELLINGHAM — A carjacker remains at-large after he told a woman he had a gun, forced her to drive him from the scene of another crime and — after two hours of eluding police — ordered her to drop him off on Fraser Street, according to police.
The 24-year-old woman was not harmed in the kidnapping Tuesday evening, Dec. 11.
Police believe the suspect is James M. Craver, 28. He was last seen just after 7 p.m. in the 1900 block of Fraser. Bellingham police spokesman Mark Young said he may be armed and dangerous.
We’ll have an article today, but in the meantime here’s the narrative from Young.
The Bellingham Police Department is asking for your help in locating a suspect in connection with a kidnapping which occurred on Tuesday evening at about 5:00 p.m. Officers were called to the area of West Bakerview Road and Eliza at about 4:50 p.m on the report that a victim of an attempted vehicle prowl was chasing a suspect. It was reported that the suspect was armed with a box cutter. While officers were in route, several more calls were received by Whatcom Dispatch Center of a suspect in that same area attempting to get into at least two occupied vehicles and that the suspect was able to get into one vehicle forcing the occupant to drive away.
One of the witnesses was able to provide a license plate of the victim’s vehicle to officers. A Bellingham Police Sergeant was able to contact the registered owner of the vehicle living in Skagit County. The registered owner was able to provide the Sergeant with the cell phone number of the driver. The Sergeant called that number which was answered by the suspect. The Sergeant did not identify himself but asked to speak with the driver as if he knew her. The victim was able to speak with the Sergeant briefly but was not able to give her location before the suspect pulled the phone away and disabled it.
A broadcast of the vehicle description was provided to all law enforcement agencies in the area and as other notifications were being made, the Sergeant received a call on his cell phone from the victim’s phone. Thankfully, the victim was able to report that she was in the 1600 block of Iowa Street alone and unharmed.
Officer contacted the victim, a 28 year old Skagit County woman and learned that when the suspect got into her car initially, he told her that he had a gun and demanded that she drive. The suspect got out of the car in the 1900 block of Frasier Street at around 7:00 p.m. and remains at large at this time.
The suspect is 28 year old James M. Craver. Craver is described as a white male, 5” 7” and weighs about 200 pounds. He was last seen wearing a blue grey hooded sweatshirt. Craver has a neck tattoo on the right side of his neck “Teresa”. Craver has short brown hair. Craver is possibly armed and should be considered dangerous. Anyone with information concerning Craver’s location is asked to please call 911 immediately.
A 2010 court case lists Craver’s most recent address in the 3600 block of Lakeway Drive. He was also named as a suspect in a felony assault in Everson from earlier on Tuesday. Police aren’t sure how he made his way from Everson to Bellingham.