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Winnipeg man faces charges including arson, theft, dangerous driving in alleged spree

A Winnipeg man is behind bars following what police allege was a week-long crime spree involving theft, arson and attacks on people in a stolen truck.

Police say the 29-year-old first appeared on their radar May 14 when he allegedly tried to hit an employee at a Portage Avenue sports facility with his truck after he was caught trespassing.

Investigators say the employee had escorted the suspect to the parking lot and, as the employee started walking back to the building, the suspect got in his truck and drove at the employee.

The employee jumped out of the vehicle’s path, but only narrowly avoided being hit, police said.

Police allege suspect was involved in a similar incident a few days later, when he was escorted out of another business on Pembina Highway.

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The employee in that case hid behind a pillar and also escaped injury.

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A few hours after that incident, officers received word that a truck had crashed into a street light in the 2000 block of Pembina Highway.

Witnesses at the scene saw the driver of the vehicle set the interior on fire before running off.

Police caught up with the suspect a few blocks away and arrested him after a short foot chase. He was found in possession of a knife and a lighter, which were seized as evidence. His female passenger was also arrested.

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Investigators further allege that, after the crash, the suspect went into a nearby business, entered a restricted area and took the wallets of two employees.

He also set off a fire extinguisher. No one was injured.

Officers also found out the truck the suspect had used in his alleged crimes was reported stolen earlier that week.

The man now faces over a dozen charges, including assault, arson, theft, mischief, possession of a weapon, dangerous driving, possession of stolen property, failure to stop, and failure to comply with a release order.

His 29-year-old passenger was charged with arson and possession of stolen property.

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