Vancouver Police utilize multiple marine units during call for service after man jumps into Columbia River

Photo courtesy Vancouver Police Department
Photo courtesy Vancouver Police Department

After nearly one hour of negotiation, the male suspect agreed to grab a floatation device and was taken into custody

VANCOUVER – A 44-year-old man was rescued after jumping into the Columbia River Wednesday evening.

Photo courtesy Vancouver Police Department
Photo courtesy Vancouver Police Department

On Wednesday (Aug. 24) at about 6:30 p.m., Vancouver Police responded to the 6000 block of SE Riverside Drive for the report of suspicious activity. A resident reported two vehicles, a U-Haul and an inoperable pickup, were parked in front of and in their driveway and two males associated with the vehicles were going door to door asking for gasoline. 

When officers arrived, one of the males provided a false name and took off running. The male jumped off a 20-foot embankment, ran over the railroad tracks and jumped into the Columbia River. 

Due to the cold water temperatures and swift current, officers quickly notified area emergency marine units and got permission to board a privately owned boat to get closer to the male until the marine units could arrive. 

Officers made ongoing attempts to keep the male from swimming farther from shore and from rescue boats. The male refused multiple offers of a life jacket or the opportunity to board one of the boats. 

After nearly one hour of negotiation, the male agreed to grab a floatation device, swam close to shore, and was taken into custody. He was transported by boat to a nearby boat dock for evaluation by medical personnel before being booked into jail. 

Joshua D. Rouse, 44, was booked into the Clark County Jail for Criminal Impersonation I. 

Follow up on the status of the U-Haul is underway and a search warrant is pending.

Vancouver Police Department officials offered thanks to the Vancouver Fire Department, Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, the Portland Police Bureau and AMR for their assistance during this incident. 

Information provided by the Vancouver Police Department.

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