Marion County OR – On Saturday, January 31, 2015, at approximately 12:23 a.m., an Oregon State Police (OSP) trooper on Interstate 5 stopped a white, 2006 Honda Civic, for a speeding violation. The driver, identified as 21 year-old TRACY A. BETANCOURT-GARCIA, of Gresham, pulled over near milepost 242, at the Linn/Marion County line. As the trooper was in the process of writing Bentancourt-Garcia a citation, she and the male passenger switched places and the Honda left the scene and a pursuit ensued.
So far the investigation has shown that, the pursuit moved off the freeway and then back on again in the south Marion County area. At some point the new driver, identified as GUSTAVO FLORES-VEGA, 22, of Boring, left the freeway once more and went through Turner and out Mill Creek Road toward Aumsville before the vehicle turned onto 75th Place.
Troopers utilized a Tactical Vehicle Intervention (TVI) or similar technique to stop the car. After the vehicle was disabled Flores-Vega ran on foot and Troopers gave chase. After a short foot chase Flores-Vega was taken into custody by Troopers without further incident or injury.
The Sheriff’s Office can confirm that during the pursuit of Flores-Vega shots were fired by Troopers. Detective Sergeant Craig Cunningham stated, “This is an active investigation, and it will take time to put all of the pieces together.”
No one was injured during this incident and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office is assisting OSP by leading the investigation. Flores-Vega is currently at the Salem Hospital, under guard, where he is being treated for an illness not related to last night’s incident. Mr. Flores-Vega’s is under arrest for attempting to elude the police and once he has been cleared by the hospital he will be taken to the Marion County Jail. Once the investigation is completed it will be submitted to the District Attorney’s Office for review and to determine what, if any, charges will be filed.
According to Oregon State Police spokesperson Lt. Josh Brooks, both Troopers involved in last night’s pursuit have been placed on paid administrative leave. Lt. Brooks stated, “This is standard procedure in these types of use of force cases.” The Troopers names are not being released at this time.
Investigators are looking for motorists who may have witnessed the incident. If you were in the area last night and saw the pursuit of Mr. Flores-Vega please call our tip line at 503-540-8079.