Anchorage Man Arrested in Chase after Assaulting Taxi Cab Driver and Stealing His Vehicle

After receiving a report of a taxi driver and the theft of his taxi, multiple Anchorage police officers responded to West 18th Avenue and Arctic Boulevard where the incident occurred on Monday evening.

Some officers went to the victim and others immediately began looking for the stolen vehicle. The taxi driver told police that he had picked up his fare at 5th and E Street and shortly after, his assailant punched him in the back of his head. In fear of an additional assault, the victim pulled over to the side of the road and quickly got out of the vehicle.

The suspect, now identified as 19-year-old Grant R. Wells, climbed over from the back seat and drove away with the taxi.

Meanwhile, swing shift officers located the stolen vehicle being driven outbound on the Glenn Highway and “Patrol officers used driving techniques to slow the taxi down and encourage the driver to stop the vehicle,” APD reported. Wells refused to pull over and instead rammed one patrol vehicle in an attempt to escape.

Wells soon got stuck in a snow bank near the Muldoon Overpass as officers worked to pin him in. He attempted to spin the vehicle’s tires in another attempt to evade but was unsuccessful. Soon after, he crawled out of the passenger side window and began to walk away.

Commands were given to stop and give himself up. He stopped walking but was otherwise non-compliant. It wasn’t until additional offers arrived on the scene that he was taken into custody without further incident.

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Wells was charged with Robbery II, Vehicle Theft I, Theft II, Criminal Mischief III, Assault IV, and Resisting and remanded to the Anchorage Jail.

The cab driver suffered injuries in the assault but declined to had medics respond.

Nothing was stolen from the cab but significant damage was done to the cab’s camera system.