Saturday, April 1, 2023



Stakeout at Bodega Bay campground results in high-speed chase, crash

Christopher Chung/The Press Democrat

Sonoma County Sheriff’s deputies on a stakeout hoping to catch a thief stealing generators from RVs at a campground in Bodega Bay, CA, ended up in a high-speed chase with a deputy losing control and crashing into a house on Route 1, setting it on fire.

On the morning of the crash, Sonoma County Sheriff’s deputy Matt Carlson and two other deputies were in Bodega Bay following prior reports of stolen generators at the Doran Beach campground, reported The Press Democrat. One deputy sat in an unmarked patrol car inside the campground, while Deputy Matt Carlson and a second deputy waited near the exit in marked vehicles.

Carlson attempted to stop the driver of a Honda Pilot seen entering and quickly exiting the campground at about 5 a.m. Suspecting he had committed a theft, they followed the car onto northbound Highway 1. The Honda did not stop for Carlson, and then less than a minute into the high-speed pursuit, Carlson’s Ford Explorer lost traction on a curve on the road.

The vehicle crossed over the southbound lane into the corner of a home at the 600 block of Highway 1. Carlson was able to free himself from the car and flag down a second deputy, who helped three uninjured occupants out of the home as it caught fire.

Santa Rosa resident Ryan Moore, 35, was arrested in connection with the chase later that morning, booked into the Sonoma County Jail on suspicion of several crimes, including reckless evading causing great bodily injury, resisting a peace officer causing serious bodily injury and possession of a stolen vehicle.

The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office will review the incident to determine if Carlson followed department policy regarding high-speed vehicle pursuits. The CHP will investigate the cause of the wreck.

Moore is expected to appear at the Sonoma County Superior Courthouse this morning.

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