Man arrested after falling asleep in stolen vehicle in Abbotsford

Another man in a stolen car is arrested with a loaded handgun

  • Mar. 5, 2015 3:00 p.m.

Abbotsford Police have arrested two men allegedly found in stolen vehicles

A man who fell asleep in a stolen car and another man caught with a loaded gun were arrested by Abbotsford Police in separate incidents in the last week.

A citizen called police just before 6 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 27 to report that a man was passed out behind the wheel of a Honda Civic in the 33500 block of McCallum Place.

Police arrived on scene and confirmed the vehicle as stolen. They then woke up the suspect and arrested him.

Const. Ian MacDonald said a search of the vehicle resulted in locating several stolen documents and identification connected to recent thefts and break-and-enters.

Christopher James Mitchell, 26, of Burnaby has now been charged with possession of stolen property over $5,000, possession of break-In instruments, possession of identity documents, operating a motor vehicle while disqualified, and breach of a court order.

On Tuesday, March 3 just before 10 p.m., officers with the Abbotsford Police crime reduction unit located a Ford F-150 pickup travelling in the area of Mt. Lehman and Downes roads.

The licence plate did not match the vehicle, and officers followed it until the driver pulled into a gas station at 200 Street and 86 Avenue in Langley.

Officers checked the vehicle identification number and confirmed the truck  was stolen.

The driver was arrested and a subsequent search of the vehicle located a loaded 9mm handgun on the floor in the back seat of the truck. Stolen credit cards and identification were also located.

Colby Dean Romanchych, a 33-year-old man with connections to Abbotsford, Mission and New Westminster, has now been charged with possession of stolen property over $5,000, possession of a prohibited/restricted firearm, unlawfully occupying a vehicle with a firearm, possession of identity documents and possession of stolen credit cards.

Romanchych was previously identified by police as a “prolific offender” and was sentenced to eight months in jail in 2013 after pleading guilty to five of 15 charges in Langley.

The charges were related to his shoplifting a water filter from a Home Depot and then assaulting a police officer who tried to arrest him.

He was also sentenced for a series of thefts of expensive lottery scratch tickets.

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