Police: Car theft suspect found hiding in portable toilet

Police: Car theft suspect found hiding in portable toilet

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- A Springfield man was found hiding in a portable toilet Friday afternoon after police say he stole a work pickup truck from Hanlon Middle School.

Just after 12 p.m. Friday an officer went to a home near 5th and M St. when the officer spotted Kevin Scott Bray, 35 of Eugene approaching the area.

After seeing the officer, Bray jumped a fence onto the nearby Hamlin Middle School grounds and stole a maroon pickup truck from a worker cleaning the baseball field bleachers, police officials said.

KVAL’s Lauren Lee and photojournalist Loren Ruark were interviewing Springfield Police Sergeant Dick Jones about car break-ins when the stolen truck report came into dispatch.

“It sounds like this truck may have been sitting there with the keys in it, and a trailer with equipment in it,” Sgt. Jones said. “He jumped into a truck and jumped off.”

Jones said an officer was following up on some outstanding arrest warrants at a Springfield home when Kevin Scott Bray, 35, ran toward Hamlin Middle School.

A police officer spotted the truck on Pioneer Parkway at Centennial moments after it left the middle school, officials said.

Officers found the worker's truck abandoned in a neighborhood near the Willamette river bike path

After an hour of searching, a Springfield Police K9 unit eventually found Bray hiding in a portable toilet near the construction zone under the I-5 bridge. 

He was booked at the Lane County Jail for unauthorized use of a vehicle, reckless driving and outstanding arrest warrants.

The construction worker left his wallet and sports equipment inside, something Sgt. Jones says you should avoid.

“Yeah, you can see we've got couple pairs of sunglasses sitting out in the open,” said Sgt. Jones. “Headphones, a cell-phone charger and sunglasses. These guys are looking for anything they can use that might be of some value for them.” 

In recent months, items that have been stolen from car break-ins include a briefcase, cell phone charger, IRS tax forms, W2 forms, sweatshirts, headphones, sunglasses, and wallets.

"They don't care about your window or damaging your property because they're gonna be gone," said Sgt. Jones.