Marysville Police Chief Rick Smith (left) and Mayor Jon Nehring (right) congratulate Brie Stewart for her role in the arrest of a man with several outstanding warrants.
Brie Stewart was behind the counter at Marysville's Play It Again Sports on Feb. 17 when a man walked into the store and asked if he take a used bicycle for a test ride, not an uncommon request. Stewart said yes, then watched as the man rode the bike out of the store's parking lot and headed east on 88th Street NE.
Quickly, the employee jumped into her own vehicle and gave chase. After the suspect turned south next to the railroad tracks adjacent to State Avenue, Stewart caught up with him. She convinced the man the store wouldn't press charges if he returned the bike, and he agreed.
However, as Stewart and store owner Susan Scott soon learned, Marysville police pursue criminal suspects even if the victims decline to press charges. Officers Belinda Paxton and Pete Shove, who had responded to Scott's 911 call, located the man based on Stewart's description.
The officers soon determined the 40-year-old Skagit County man had several outstanding warrants for his arrest for driving offenses, theft, and criminal solicitation. He was taken into custody and held pending transportation to Skagit County.
For her part in the investigation, Mayor Jon Nehring and Police Chief Rick Smith presented Brie Stewart with a certificate of commendation at the March 14 City Council meeting.
"Our police speak often about the vital partnership that needs to exist between law enforcement and the people they serve-citizens, business owners and others," said Nehring. "It is an important element in the department's community-oriented policing and problem-solving philosophy that ties directly into crime prevention."
The mayor continued, "Stewart's bold reaction to do all she could to keep the bike and suspect in sight while police were summoned to investigate is a perfect example of what citizens and police can do when they work together to prevent crime-or in this case, bring it to a stop, ending in an arrest, before the situation escalated or someone got hurt."
The departmental honor is most often awarded to law enforcement personnel, but Nehring and Smith agreed the woman's actions merited recognition.
Mayor Jon Nehring and Police Chief Rick Smith present Play it Again Sports employee Brie Stewart with a certificate of commendation for foiling a bike theft at their Marysville store on Feb. 17, leading to the arrest of a man with several outstanding warrants.