PASO ROBLES — San Luis Obispo County resident Joshua Glenn Ritchie, 32, walked into McCarthy’s Wholesale at 43 Higuera St. in San Luis Obispo April 29 with a paper copy of his driver’s license and asked to test drive a vehicle.
Ritchie picked out and took a white 2013 BMW X5 to test drive, but never returned the vehicle. At noon, McCarthy’s reported the vehicle stolen. San Luis Obispo Police Department officers were able to locate Ritchie driving the vehicle and a pursuit ensued.
San Luis Obispo Police Department requested assistance from the Paso Robles Police Department at approximately 12:57 p.m. after chasing Ritchie from San Luis Obispo to Paso Robles.
A Paso Robles Police Department Volunteer Patrol member saw the BMW vehicle on the 3600 block of Spring St and notified a police officer that the stolen vehicle was headed southbound on Spring Street.
Police located the vehicle moments later and initiated a traffic stop.
“As another officer arrived as backup, Ritchie started yelling and quickly accelerated northbound toward Highway 101,” Cmdr. Tim Murphy with the Paso Robles Police Department said. The officers did not pursue, but started toward Ritchie’s known address off of Monterey Road north of the city.”
San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office Deputies located the BMW traveling north on 101 and tried to stop it, but Ritchie refused to stop and another pursuit was initiated.
“Ritchie drove toward Monterey Road where he stopped and fled on foot into the Salinas River bed. PRPD officers assisted deputies in the search and Ritchie was located on the east bank of the riverbed, hiding in bushes” Murphy said.
Ritchie was taken into custody around 2:30 p.m. by SLO Sheriff’s deputies without further incident. Ritchie was arrested and charged with making threats with the intent to terrorize, a felony charge for grand theft of property over $950, felony of receiving known stolen property and misdemeanor auto theft. He was booked into County Jail at 5:43 p.m. and a bond was set at $50,000.