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Man pleads guilty, sentenced to 2 years community custody for property crimes

BELLINGHAM, Wash. — Joseph Nathanial Gott, age 26, pled guilty to 2 property crimes and had other related charges dismissed in Whatcom County Superior Court on Thursday, September 22nd.

Gott was arrested March 8th and booked into the Whatcom County Jail charged with multiple felony charges including theft of a motor vehicle, possession of a stolen vehicle and vehicle prowling resulting from investigations by Bellingham Police Department dating back to January.

According to court records, Gott was sentenced to 24 months in community custody after pleading guilty to a felony charge of theft of a motor vehicle and a felony charge of possession of a stolen vehicle. He is also required to pay $500 in fees and fines.

According to affidavits of probable cause filed by prospectors in Whatcom County Superior Court, Gott and his girlfriend were seen by an acquaintance walking near the acquaintance’s vehicle in the 4000 block of Eliza Avenue. The vehicle was running while parked. Soon after, it went missing and reported stolen. The vehicle was recovered in Mt Vernon and contained documents with Gott’s girlfriend’s alias. The acquaintance asked Gott in person if he took the vehicle and he admitted to it. This was reported to BPD. A charge of theft of a motor vehicle was filed in the court and a notice to appear mailed to Gott’s last known address.

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On March 5th, BPD officers responded to a report that a Ford pickup had been stolen overnight. Just after midnight on March 7th, officers responded to the 4100 block of Stonecrest Court after a witness reported seeing someone enter a Volkswagen Jetta that was parked in a driveway. The person was said to have rummaged around with a flashlight and then entered a Honda CRV parked nearby and drove off in it.

A BPD investigator responding to the call noticed the Honda leaving at a high rate of speed and activated their patrol vehicle’s emergency lights and siren in an effort to pull the Honda over. Instead, the Honda fled northbound on Meridian Street in a reckless manner and the investigator did not pursue further.

The Honda was soon after located at E Smith Road and Everson Goshen Road. The Ford that had been stolen previously was also located, this time about 2 blocks from where the VW and Honda had been parked.

Fingerprints were lifted from the Ford, Volkswagen and Honda by a BPD investigator and processed by an automated biometric identification system which indicated Gott was the source of all of them.

Gott was arrested and booked into the Whatcom County Jail. As a result of the charges filed, he was a defendant in 3 Whatcom County Superior Court cases. Singular charges in the other 2 cases were dismissed. He remained in custody pending being able to post a $5,000 bond until yesterday’s sentencing. He was released to treatment according to jail records.

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