Anthony Cortez and Danielle “Deedee” Charlton, are seen in these undated Facebook images.

Suspect in fatal crash charged in jewelry heist

Anthony Creed Cortez now faces charges in Nelson, Chilliwack and Revelstoke.

The man who allegedly robbed a jewelry store last month before fleeing in a stolen vehicle that later crashed, killing a passenger, has been charged with break and enter.

Anthony Creed Cortez will appear in court in Nelson on Nov. 14 on charges of break and enter and disguising his face with intent to commit an offence.

Cortez allegedly robbed Ted Allen Jewellery in Nelson on Sept. 11 of $30,000 worth of merchandise.

Related: Man charged in Ted Allen’s robbery

Cortez has not been charged in the Sept. 11 collision near Hope, where he is thought to have been driving a stolen SUV that crashed into a highway maintenance vehicle. Hope traffic services have stated their suspect is in police custody on a matter unrelated to the crash, and they can’t reveal the name until charges are laid.

The driver of the stolen SUV is alleged to have left the crash scene, as well as his fatally injured passenger, by stealing a Ford F350 truck from a Good Samaritan who had stopped to help.

Danielle Charlton, 35 and a mother of four, was the passenger who died at the scene.

Related: Aldergrove family remembers victim of fatal crash

Along with the latest charges from Nelson, Cortez stands charged with several offences from April through June filed by Chilliwack police, along with several from Wednesday, Sept. 20 from Revelstoke, when he was arrested there.

Cpl. Thomas Blakney of the Revelstoke detachment, who arrested the suspect on Sept. 20, told Black Press that an initial report to police came from a witness who had recognized a distinctive motorcycle they’d seen reported as stolen on social media. When police approached, the driver fled, going through a road checkpoint.

Related: Suspect in fatal crash, jewelry heist, charged with assault

“We didn’t engage in pursuing him, he was going at a high rate of speed,” Blakney said.

However, police had reason to believe he was low on fuel, and thought he would attempt to steal some and go to ground.

“With assistance from eyes in the sky, and investigative police work, we found him.”

The suspect was located at Canyon Hot Springs campground, allegedly trying to steal fuel from campers.

When told he was under arrest, he jumped on the motorbike but it wouldn’t start, Blakney recounts.

Related: Suspect in fatal crash, jewelry heist in custody

“Most people would get off and run,” he says, but the suspect didn’t. Blakney thought he might be about to produce a weapon, and managed to kick over the bike, with the suspect falling to the ground.

A foot pursuit through the forest ended with the man arrested.

Stemming from the arrest, Cortez is charged with assaulting a police officer, resisting the same officer, possession of stolen property – a Kawasaki motorcycle, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle and breaching bail by carrying a knife.

Through Chilliwack police, Cortez is also charged with assaulting Danielle Charlton on April 16 of this year.

Other charges include breaching a no-contact order with Charlton four times – one in April, one in May and two in June. On June 22, he is also charged with obstructing a police officer.

Cortez appeared via video in Salmon Arm provincial court on Sept. 25 from the Oliver Correctional Centre on the Revelstoke and Chilliwack charges. He is also set to reappear via video for a bail hearing on Nov. 21.

– with files from the Nelson Star


@SalmonArm
marthawickett@saobserver.net

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Danielle ‘Deedee’ Charlton’s estranged husband Charlie Charlton held a photo of Deedee. On either side of Charlie is his and Deedee’s sons Charles, 13, and Danny, 12. Image credit/Troy Landreville

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