Hit and Run Investigation Leads to Arrest of Wanted Thief

Case # 23-0001050


On February 19, 2023, at approximately 5 a.m., The Chico Police Dispatch Center received a call of a single-vehicle collision on W. Sacramento Avenue at Nord Avenue. The caller stated the vehicle struck a fire Hydrant, shearing it completely off and causing flooding from the sheared pipe. The driver, and sole occupant, fled from the vehicle on foot, south on Nord Avenue. An arriving officer observed a man walking on the sidewalk of Nord Avenue, matching the suspect description. The man was detained after it was determined he was giving the officer a false name. The man, eventually identified as Levi Nierenhausen, was positively identified as the driver who fled from the crashed vehicle. During the investigation, it was determined that Nierenhausen had, just prior to the collision, committed a burglary of a vehicle nearby.

Nierenhausen was already wanted for fleeing from Chico Police in a stolen vehicle on two prior occasions, both on the night of February 4, 2023. During those two separate pursuits, Nierenhausen fled in a stolen vehicle after officers attempted to stop him. Nierenhausen drove with extreme disregard for the public’s safety during his flight, including traveling at speeds up to 100 MPH on the Esplanade, in an attempt to avoid arrest. Officers disengaged from the pursuits due to the extreme risk to public safety being caused by Nierenhausen’s driving.

Nierenhausen was arrested for Hit and Run, Burglary, Possession of Burglary Tools, Vehicle Theft, Possession of Stolen Property, Failure to Yield with Wanton Disregard for the Public’s Safety, and Providing a False Name. Nierenhausen was also wanted by the Butte County Sheriff’s Office for a prior Failure to Yield incident as well as three Felony Warrants. He was transported to the Butte County Jail for booking on the listed charges and warrants with no bail.

Location: W. Sacramento Avenue at Nord Avenue, Chico

Suspect: Levi Nierenhausen, 24 years of age from Concow

Supervisor: Sgt. M. Bass S6

Commander: Lt. T. Tupper L7

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