A Beaverton man was arrested this week after allegedly swiping a cash register from a Shari’s restaurant in Wilsonville, smashing into a parked car and — worst of all — leaving his cat to take the blame.
Both the stolen loot and the abandoned feline were recovered by Clackamas County deputies. The alleged culprit, 37-year-old Michael Ronald Woods, was arrested for second-degree theft, hit and run and attempt to elude.
The story begins around 10 p.m. Friday, March 19, when deputies responded to the reported theft of a cash register from the Wilsonville Shari’s. A Clackamas County deputy contracted to the Wilsonville Police Department spotted the suspect in a white Chevy Impala a few hours after the theft.
After the deputy attempted to stop the suspect vehicle, the driver fled a short distance before crashing into a parked car. Woods then reportedly bailed from his own vehicle and ran away on foot, the sheriff’s office says.
Deputies soon got their paws on Woods with the help of a K-9 unit from the Beaverton Police Department.
While searching the suspect’s vehicle, deputies say they discovered the stolen cash register, multiple methamphetamine pipes — and a lone black cat. The cat had been abandoned in the car by Woods during his attempted getaway.
A deputy drove the cat — which quickly acquired the nickname “Asher” — to the VCA Animal Hospital in Clackamas. Asher enjoyed a “catnap” on the passenger seat of the patrol car during the ride, deputies said.
Anyone with more information about Woods or his alleged criminal activity may contact the Sheriff’s Office Tip Line by phone at 503-723-4949 or by using the online email form. Reference case no. 21-005702.
Woods, who had come within a whisker of escaping justice, was booked at the Clackamas County Jail. His bail was set at $27,500.
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