Police say Wyatt Yoder suspect in car chase, stolen vehicle | TheUnion.com

Police say Wyatt Yoder suspect in car chase, stolen vehicle

Grass Valley police say they believe Wyatt Yoder, wanted on accusations he fled from officers, was involved in an early Wednesday hit-and-run before likely escaping in a stolen car.

The crash happened during a police chase that began around 6:45 a.m. near Lower Colfax and Rattlesnake roads, sheriff’s Lt. Sean Scales said.

A Nevada County deputy spotted a white Toyota Avalon driving erratically. The deputy tried to stop the Avalon, though its driver didn’t yield and a pursuit began, Scales said.

The chase led deputies and California Highway Patrol officers onto Dog Bar and Rattlesnake roads before reaching Highway 174. At some point officers lost sight of the Avalon, the lieutenant said.

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Moments later the hit-and-run happened at Cornish Court and Pine Street, Grass Valley police said.

Rayah Newman, who delivers newspapers for The Union, said she was on Cornish Court, nearing the stop sign at Pine Street, when around 7 a.m. the Avalon approached from the north.

“He just completely went into the side of the street I was on,” Newman said. “It was head on.”

Newman, delivering papers with her mother, said she and the Avalon’s driver stared at each other for moments. He then drove away, and Newman got his license plate number.

“It didn’t appear anyone was injured,” Scales said.

About 10 minutes later officers found the Avalon behind a Kate Hayes Street apartment complex, under a half-mile away from the hit-and-run, Grass Valley Sgt. Jason Perry said.

“It’s a strong possibility, yes,” Perry said of the chance the suspect is Yoder. “We do believe it was him.”

About an hour later police responded to reports of a stolen vehicle on West Empire Street, the sergeant said.

Perry said it’s likely that the suspect in the chase and hit-and-run stole a white 1967 Chevrolet C10 pickup. The thief crashed through a gate to escape.

Yoder has been seen a handful of times since he failed to appear to a May court hearing in Nevada County Superior Court, reports state.

Authorities accused Yoder in June 2018 of running from officers. He made bail, missed a May hearing and was then seen in June near downtown Grass Valley. The ensuing chase almost led to a woman and child being hit, reports state.

Officers again saw Yoder days later near Lodestar Drive and Dog Bar Road. He fled in a Toyota 4Runner, which later was found abandoned in a field, authorities said.

To contact City Editor Alan Riquelmy, email ariquelmy@theunion.com or call 530-477-4239.

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