VANCOUVER, Wash. – A Vancouver police motorcycle officer who stopped a black pickup truck believed to be stolen was shot seven times when the driver leaned out his window and opened fire, according to court documents released Tuesday.
Officer Dustin Goudschaal survived the shooting, and he’s in stable condition at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center.
After Goudschaal was shot in the area of Northeast 162nd Avenue and 34th Street, the suspect, who police identified as James Sapp, sped off with a passenger in his truck, according to witness Sam Anderson.
Anderson said Goudschaal asked her to help him, and she bandaged a wound on Goudschall’s neck before paramedics arrived.
In the minutes and hours that followed, police frantically searched for Sapp, who they said is affiliated with a white supremacist group and has a large swastika tattoo and “White Pride” across his lower back.
Sapp appeared to crash the black pickup truck a few blocks from the traffic stop. The passenger in Sapp’s truck, Timothy Plantenberg, told detectives he grabbed the steering wheel of the truck to cause the crash, and that Sapp later opened fire and shot at him, but that he managed to escape.
Sapp’s apparent crime spree didn’t stop with the crash, according to police. He came across an 88-year-old man, pushed him and grabbed the keys to his tan Chevy S10 pickup. Two men tried to stop Sapp from driving away, but he punched one of them in the face and assaulted the other, police said.
Sapp drove off in the stolen truck, but later crashed, and police took him into custody.
In an interview with a detective, he blamed the shooting on a passenger in his truck that he identified only as “Dan.”
Sapp made his first court appearance Tuesday. He’s charged with attempted murder, robbery and unlawful possession of a firearm after Monday’s shooting. He has a criminal history that includes multiple felony convictions. The Clark County Sheriff’s Office said Sapp was arrested in 2010 for felony assault. At his home, deputies confiscated drugs, ammunition, and materials related to white supremacy.
Goudschaal has worked for the Vancouver Police Department since 2008. Before then, he worked as an officer with the University of Arizona Police Department.