Prolific Offender Arrested After Crashing into Occupied Residence

Official News Release Download

On September 9th, 2022, at 4:23 am, Abbotsford Police Patrol Officers located a vehicle towing a stolen trailer along Highway 11 & Hallert Road. The trailer had been stolen minutes earlier from the Mission area and was loaded with ATV's and a dirt bike. 

Patrol officers began to follow the vehicle from a distance using unmarked police vehicles. As the driver made his way through the streets of Abbotsford, additional officers were in the process of setting up a spike belt along Clearbrook Road in an attempt to stop the vehicle.

The driver observed this and attempted to avoid the spike belt by making a sudden right turn. During this attempt, the driver lost control of his vehicle, crashing into a residence at Clearbrook Road & Charlotte Ave intersection. Although shaken, the occupants of the home were not injured.

39-year-old John Szanto was arrested at the scene and remains in police custody. Charges of Dangerous Operation of a Motor Vehicle, Theft of Motor Vehicle, Theft Over $5,000, and Breach of Release Order had been approved by the BC Prosecution Service.

"Prolific offenders such as Mr.Szanto continue to impact our communities, putting public safety at risk. These offenders demonstrate time and time again that they have no respect for our Justice system as well as their court-ordered conditions. Our front-line officers are dedicated to holding these prolific offenders accountable by bringing them before the courts," said Staff Sergeant Mark Jordan.  

AbbyPD file 2022-37442

Sgt. Paul Walker
Abbotsford Police Media Relations Officer
[email protected]