Teen facing felony theft charge

FAIRMONT — A Fairmont teen is facing felony charges in Martin County.

Eugene Kay Anthony Washington, 17, has been charged with theft and possession of stolen property.

According to court documents:

On May 29, a Fairmont police officer was driving west on Blue Earth Avenue when the officer observed a vehicle that appeared to be a Chevrolet S-10 pickup driving north on Prairie Avenue. Officers had previously been advised that a Chevrolet S-10 had been reported stolen out of Emmet County, Iowa.

The officer caught up to the vehicle and noticed it was displaying an Iowa tag. The officer requested that the tag be run, and it returned as stolen. The vehicle turned onto Fourth Street heading west, and turned into a small parking lot before reaching Downtown Plaza.

The officer activated his emergency lights and conducted a felony stop, assisted by other Fairmont police officers. The driver, later identified as Washington, was ordered out of the vehicle, searched for weapons and placed into the back of the squad car. An adult passenger was also present and was removed from the vehicle and placed under arrest.

Washington was transported to the Martin County Law Enforcement Center and was read his rights. Washington said he understood his rights and agreed to answer questions.

In his initial statement, Washington said he got the vehicle from a man at the apartment complex on Johnson Street in Fairmont. However, the officer spoke with a relative who said Washington had been stuck in Estherville and had asked for a ride. When confronted with that information, Washington altered his story to say the man had gone down to Estherville and picked him up, then he drove the vehicle after they got to Fairmont.

Another officer also interviewed Washington, who then admitted he stole the vehicle from Estherville and drove it to Fairmont because he was upset that he was stuck in Iowa with no way to get home. Washington said he was walking past Hy-Vee in Estherville with his girlfriend and saw the vehicle unlocked with the keys inside, so he then drove the pickup to Fairmont with his girlfriend.

After the interviews, Washington was transported to Faribault County Jail.