Anniston resident Michael Sundstrom, 49, was charged with possession of burglar’s tools, a felony, and third-degree receipt of stolen property, a misdemeanor, after officers successfully stopped his van at 4:30 a.m. today.
An officer had earlier observed Sundstrom’s van parked near a series of vacant buildings – known as the starships – on Halifax Road at McClellan, Anniston Sgt. Josh Doggrell said.
Police have recently stepped up their patrol of McClellan, because of a recent spate of vandalism and copper thefts, Doggrell said.
Because of the increase in those crimes, the officer decided to stop the van and question the driver.
But the driver – Sundstrom – sped up instead of pulling over, driving west on Halifax Road, Doggrell said.
Officers chased the van for several minutes, following it out of the former fort on Baltzell Gate Road and onto McClellan Boulevard.
Sundstrom eventually pulled the van over at the intersection of McClellan Boulevard and Lenlock Lane, a police report shows.
While officers questioned Sundstrom, they noticed an assortment of tools and what appeared to be stolen copper pipes in the floor of the van.
That observance led to Sundstrom’s arrests on the charges.
Doggrell said investigators today were attempting to determine whether they could connect Sundstrom to any of three copper thefts that happened in the McClellan area in September.
Information about Sundstrom’s bond and court date was unavailable Wednesday.
Contact Star Staff Writer Cameron Steele at 256-235-3562.