WHATCOM COUNTY, Wash. — Anthony Michel Santoro Lake, age 51, faced multiple charges of theft, eluding, and assault in Whatcom County Superior Court after an incident in February where he was suspected of attempting to run over a Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office deputy and an Everson Police officer while ramming the officer’s vehicle to avoid being arrested for shoplifting.
According to court documents, Lake’s plea of guilty to the following charges was accepted by the court on December 15th.
- attempting to elude a police vehicle
- 2nd-degree assault with a deadly weapon
- 2nd-dgree burglary
- 2nd-degree theft (2 counts)
Lake was sentenced to 15 months in confinement with credit for time served and to be served concurrently with sentences imposed in multiple other cases in Bellingham and Lynden Municipal Courts. Theft and burglary charges faced in 5 other Superior Court cases were dismissed.
Lake will be required to served 18 months in community custody after serving the sentence in confinement.
According to affidavits of probable cause prepared by Lynden Police and Everson Police and submitted into court by prosecutors, Lake was identified by witnesses as having left a grocery store in Lynden on February 21st with over $800 worth of items without paying.
Soon after, a Lynden Police officer spotted a vehicle matching the description southbound on the Guide Meridian and attempted to pull it over, but it accelerated southbound on Guide Meridian. The vehicle headed east on E Pole Road and Everson Police were advised to watch for it. Error, group does not exist! Check your syntax! (ID: 11)
An Everson Police officer pulled in behind the suspect vehicle eastbound on Everson Goshen Road and it accelerated again. The vehicle was observed at over 80mph in a 25mph zone and running stop signs. The officer terminated the pursuit while attempting to maintain visual contact.
A WCSO deputy reported he had located the vehicle at the dead end of Mission Road. While the Everson Police officer and the deputy approached the suspect vehicle with their emergency lights on, the suspect vehicle’s lights turned on and it drove toward the approaching law enforcement vehicles.
The deputy’s vehicle blocked the suspect vehicle and the deputy got out on foot. The suspect vehicle then accelerated and rammed the Everson Police vehicle with the officer in the driver’s seat. While the suspect vehicle continued to try and “drive forward through my patrol car,” the officer was able to get out.
The officer and the deputy were attempting to remove the suspect from the vehicle when it accelerated in reverse and then forward toward the deputy who had to move quickly to avoid being hit. The officer also had to take a position by the deputy’s vehicle to avoid being hit. Error, group does not exist! Check your syntax! (ID: 11)
The suspect vehicle fled west on E Smith Road with the officer and deputy in pursuit.
The suspect vehicle was then spotted doing 76mph in a 45mph on E Smith Road, running the stop light at Guide Meridian while turning southbound. It was said to be going over 100mph while another deputy pursued and was seen running another stop light.
The suspect vehicle was seen pulling into a Meridian Street hotel parking lot in Bellingham and the fleeing into the hotel. He was located hiding in a closet in 1 of the motel’s rooms and taken into custody.
At the time, Lake was out of custody after posting 2 $2,000 bonds while awaiting trial on theft charges in 2 separate Whatcom County Superior Court cases.