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Felon Arrested, Gun Recovered After Police Spot Man Stealing License Plates at Transit Center

Officers recovered a stolen handgun from a convicted felon Wednesday night after spotting him stealing license plates and chasing him on foot through the Northgate Transit Center.

Around 10:30 pm, officers were patrolling in one of the transit center’s parking lots when they saw a man unscrewing a license plate from the front of a red SUV.

The man noticed the officers, turned and started walking out of the parking lot. Officers ordered him to stop, but he took off running.

As police chased after him on foot, they saw him toss an object under a vehicle during the pursuit.

Officers caught up to the man, arrested him and found the item he’d ditched during the chase was a loaded, stolen handgun. He was also carrying an asp baton, handcuff keys, a knife, a window punch and shaved keys–tools typically used in auto theft and car prowling–as well as a small amount of cocaine. Police believe the man had planned to swap the stolen license plates with another similar–and recently stolen–vehicle in the lot.

Officers booked the 37-year-old man, who is a convicted felon and unable to legally possess firearms, into the King County Jail for firearms and stolen property violations and a felony warrant for mail theft.