Ventura County Sheriff – Incident Press Release
Over the past several days, deputies from the Moorpark Patrol Station, in coordination with the Reno (Nevada) Police Department, arrested two suspects who were involved in several high-speed vehicle pursuits, including a pursuit where a patrol vehicle was intentionally rammed by the suspects.
The incidents began in early January, when deputies from the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office – Moorpark Patrol Station received information that a Federal fugitive, identified as Brad Michael Walsh had absconded from his Federal probation and was hiding in the Moorpark area. On the evening of January 7th, deputies observed Walsh standing next to a large, full-sized 4×4 pickup truck. When deputies attempted to arrest Walsh on the Federal warrant, Walsh entered his vehicle and fled, driving recklessly and at extreme speeds. Because Walsh fled with a complete disregard for the safety of other motorists, deputies cancelled their pursuit. Detectives from the Moorpark Investigations Bureau assumed the case and obtained an arrest warrant for Walsh for California Vehicle Code section 2800.2(a) / Felony Evading.
On the evening of February 27th, Moorpark patrol deputies again observed the same pickup truck driving in the area of the 118 / 23 Freeway interchange. When deputies attempted to conduct a traffic stop on the pickup, it again fled at extremely high speeds with deputies in pursuit. At one point, the pickup exited the freeway in the city of Simi Valley. When the pickup reached the top of the freeway off ramp, it suddenly and without warning, reversed and backed into the lead pursuing vehicle, causing severe damage to the police vehicle and slightly injuring the deputy.
The vehicle again fled eastbound on the freeway at high speeds and exited onto the streets of the Western San Fernando Valley in the city of Los Angeles. Once the pursuit reached residential streets, the pickup fled with such disregard for the safety of other motorists, deputies again cancelled their pursuit. A few minutes after the pursuit was cancelled, deputies were notified by the Los Angeles Police Department that the pickup truck was involved in a solo vehicle accident in a Western San Fernando Valley neighborhood. Deputies also learned that the occupants of the truck fled the scene prior to the arrival of officers.
With the assistance of officers from the LAPD, Moorpark station patrol officers and detectives from the Moorpark Investigations Bureau responded to the crash scene and collected a significant amount of evidence, leading to the identification of the driver of the pickup truck as Michelle Halvorsen, with Brad Walsh as a passenger in the truck.
Over the next several weeks, detectives learned that Walsh had fled the state of California, while Halvorsen attempted to evade law enforcement by staying at several different locations throughout the greater LA area. On the afternoon of March 26th, Moorpark deputies received information that Halvorsen was driving through the city of Moorpark in a rented SUV. Detectives and patrol deputies conducted a coordinated stop of Halverson and arrested her without incident.
Detectives continued their investigation and on the morning of March 30th, they received information that Walsh was staying in the downtown area of Reno, Nevada. Detectives worked with officers from the Reno Police Department’s Special Enforcement Unit who located Walsh in a downtown casino and arrested him without incident.
Walsh currently awaits transfer to Federal custody from the Washoe County Detention Center in Reno. He faces charges for absconding from his Federal probation and for his January 7th vehicle pursuit in Ventura County. Halvorsen was arrested for California Vehicle Code section 2800.2(a) / Felony Evading and Penal Code section 245(c) / Assault on a peace officer with a deadly weapon. She was released on $100,000.00 bail and is awaiting trial.