BATTLE GROUND — On Nov. 20, Battle Ground Police officers responded to a report of a purse stolen from Mill Creek Pub. The purse contained, among other items, the owner’s driver’s license, cash and a credit card that was used the same day for several fraudulent purchases totaling nearly $2,000.
While the police could not identify or locate the suspect at the time, they were able to view store security footage that showed an image of the male suspect and his vehicle, a gold-colored Toyota Highlander.
Several weeks later, on Dec. 14, the suspect vehicle was observed in Battle Ground and officers conducted a traffic stop. The driver was identified as Dennis Lee Porter II, the suspect seen in the Nov. 20 store video footage making fraudulent purchases. Porter was taken into custody and charged with theft II and identity theft.
At the time of the traffic stop, officers observed several bottles of pills, unopened and seemingly new merchandise, including power tools, several bank cards and drug paraphernalia inside the vehicle.
Officers obtained a search warrant, seized the vehicle and found further evidence of theft and burglary, including identification cards that didn’t belong to Porter; several bank checks ranging from $26 to $5,000 written to someone other than Porter; medications prescribed to others, gift cards, three bags containing approximately 120 pieces of mail addressed to 30 different addresses; and a lot of new merchandise (apparel, Garmin GPS devices, several smartphones, golf clubs, jewelry, shoes and athletic wear).
A subsequent search warrant was requested and authorized based on evidence found in the vehicle pertaining to another case of stolen property. Officers located a pry bar with a lock pick, metal file, hammer, flat pry bar and crow bar.
Through their investigation, officers solved multiple cases, recovered stolen property and obtained evidence to charge Porter, 33, of Woodland, with:
- Five felony counts of second-degree possession of stolen property
- 10 felony counts of possession of stolen mail
- One felony count of making or having burglary tools
- Three gross misdemeanor counts of third-degree possession of stolen property
- Three gross misdemeanor counts of possession of another’s identification
- One misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia
- Three felony counts of theft II
- One felony count of vehicle prowl
- Four gross misdemeanor counts of theft III
Charges have been forwarded to the Clark County Prosecutor’s Office. Porter is currently being held at Clark County Jail on $57,500 bail.
The recovered mail was turned over to a postal inspector who investigated the case at the federal level. The postal inspector will notify those whose mail was recovered. Questions regarding possible stolen mail should be directed to the local post office. The remaining recovered items were placed into evidence at the Battle Ground Police Department, with some items returned to their owners.
Those who may have been victims and want to inquire about recovered items can contact Battle Ground Police Department Property Evidence Technician Emily Cain at (360) 342-5234 or email email@example.com.