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Booking photo courtesy Placer County Sheriff’s Office

Joel Bumgarner

Pursuit of reportedly suicidal man ends with crash in Colfax

Published: Tuesday, Mar. 25, 2014 - 7:32 pm

Placer County sheriff’s deputies’ pursuit of a reportedly suicidal man ended with a crash at a recreational vehicle center in Colfax.

About 5:42 p.m. Monday, a caller told the sheriff’s 911 dispatch center that Joel Bumgarner (pictured), 38, had taken pills, was drinking alcohol and had driven away from his Auburn home, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release. A deputy spotted Bumgarner driving on Bowman Road and attempted to stop him, but Bumgarner continued onto eastbound Interstate 80.

Sheriff’s officials said Bumgarner drove at speeds from 50 mph to 75 mph and exited I-80 at Colfax. He then drove at high speeds down South Canyon Way, ran a stop sign and turned into a cul-de-sac.

At the Sierra RV Center on South Canyon Way, Bumgarner crashed into a parked fifth-wheel trailer and his vehicle became stuck. He tried to dislodge his vehicle by ramming a patrol car and four additional fifth-wheel trailers, sheriff’s officials. One of the trailers was pushed into a metal building, and a PG&E box was also damaged.

Bumgarner got out of his car and started to walk away, refusing deputies’ orders to stop, officials said. A deputy then used his Taser, and Bumgarner was taken into custody. Before he was jailed, Bumgarner was taken to a local hospital because of the medication he reportedly had ingested.

The Sheriff’s Office’s Critical Accident Response Team is investigating the crash.

Bumgarner is being held in Placer County Jail on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, driving under the influence, evading, vandalism and resisting arrest. His bail is set at $100,000.


Call The Bee’s Cathy Locke, (916) 321-5287.

Read more articles by Cathy Locke



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