By Sharyn L. Decker
Lewis County Sirens news reporter
CHEHALIS – A 24-year-old Lacey man is in custody after an employee at Providence Centralia Hospital was the victim of an apparent attempted car jacking early this morning.
Police were called at 3:37 a.m. to the 1800 block of Cooks Hill Road where the victim described what had occurred in the hospital parking lot.
She told police a black male had approached her while she was warming up her vehicle, asked her if she worked there and then lingered after she told him no, according to the Centralia Police Department.
The woman called security staff but before they arrived, the man opened her door, forcibly grabbed her out of the vehicle and got inside, according to police.
“The victim, who sustained minor injuries and torn clothing from the force of the grab, managed to grab her keys and ran back to the hospital where she contacted security,” Centralia detective Sgt. Carl Buster stated in a press release.
Officers arrived to the area, summoned a K-9 and set up containment, according to Buster.
A deputy recalled contacting an individual matching that description earlier, off Interstate 5’s exit 77 in Chehalis, who had been carrying a hammer, Buster wrote.
The deputy spotted that same person walking nearby on Cooks Hill Road. He was contacted and the victim identified him as their suspect, according to Buster. His hammer was found nearby, Buster said.
Tommy W. Miller, Jr., 24 of Lacey, was taken into custody and arrested for first-degree robbery, according to police.