La Center burglary suspect arrested following car crash


A man arrested following a residential burglary in La Center had a felony warrant on him at the time of the crime, police say.

At about 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 17, Ridgefield police and the Clark County Sheriff’s Office responded to a home burglary in the area of West 15th Street and Pacific Highway in La Center. Security cameras alerted the homeowner to an unknown suspect in her residence.

The suspect smashed the rear sliding glass door of the house to enter, the release stated. He took jewelry and other valuables before leaving.

A neighbor noticed the incident and attempted to follow the suspect as he left in a silver-colored sedan, the release stated. The suspect’s driving prevented the neighbor from following.

Less than a minute later, emergency dispatch received calls that a vehicle matching the description of what the neighbor saw went off the roadway at Northwest Pacific Highway and West 10th Street, the release stated. The suspect was seen walking away from the accident. The Battle Ground Police Department assisted with a K9 unit.

Investigation into the burglary discovered evidence the suspect left behind, and identified Christopher Gaetaniello, 45, as a possibility, the release stated.

Shortly before 9 p.m., a sheriff’s deputy saw a man matching Gaetaniello’s description near the Chevron station in La Center, the release stated. He was positively identified and detained without incident.

Following an interview by detectives Gaetaniello was booked into Clark County Jail on charges of residential burglary, first-degree theft and second-degree malicious mischief, the release stated. He also had a felony U.S. Marshals warrant for his arrest at the time of the burglary.