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Suspected vehicle thief arrested at Santa Rosa home

A parolee who escaped capture after leading authorities on a brief pursuit Tuesday evening was still trying to get away when officers got their hands on him Wednesday afternoon, the CHP said.

Francis John Linson, 31, had just climbed out a bathroom window and jumped a fence at a West Third Street residence near Dutton Avenue when officers surrounding the house arrested him at gunpoint, the CHP said.

Officers had been trying to catch up with him since a CHP officer spotted someone driving alone in the northbound carpool lane on Highway 101 around 5:40 p.m. Tuesday, the CHP said.

The driver of the Ford Edge SUV exited at Todd Road and appeared to be pulling over in a Berry's Market at Moorland Avenue when the vehicle accelerated through the parking lot and sped northbound, where the officer eventually lost sight of him, authorities said.

A witness at nearby All Star Towing on Todd Road and Standish Avenue saw a man running through the tow yard, the CHP said. His description led authorities to identify the suspect as Linson, Officer Jon Sloat said.

The SUV, which was found abandoned, had been stolen from a local Budget Rent-A-Car, the CHP said. Officers investigating the case linked Linson to the West Third Street house, where they served a search warrant at 1:45 p.m. Wednesday and arrested him on suspicion of felony evasion, possession of a stolen vehicle, resisting arrest and violating parole. He was held without bail at the Sonoma County Jail, jail personnel said.

A 16-year-old boy also was arrested at the house on outstanding no-bail warrants involving drug violations, the CHP said. The teen, whose name was not released, was booked into Sonoma County Juvenile Hall.

You can reach Staff WriterMary Callahan at 521-5249 or mary.callahan@pressdemocrat.com.


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