(Updated 8:30 p.m.) WESTPORT, Conn. – A Norwalk man who ran from Westport police Wednesday morning after trying to withdraw money from a flagged bank account was captured two hours later and charged with attempted larceny, police said.
The suspect, identified as 28-year-old Eric Christian, tried to withdraw cash from an account that had insufficient funds and a security warning, Westport Police Capt. Sam Arciola said in a news release. Christian was accompanied by a West Haven woman at the time, Arciola said.
Bank personnel called police and provided the license plate number of the vehicle Christian was driving, as well as a description of the suspects. Officer Ned Batlin later saw the vehicle on Post Road East and followed the suspects into the rear parking lot at 728 Post Road East. As Batlin approached the car, Christian got out and ran into the woods, Arciola said. The female passenger, identified as 22-year-old Candace Zulawski, was taken into custody without incident, he said.
Westport police officers and detectives set up a perimeter in the area of Hillandale Road, where Christian ran into the woods, and a state police K9 unit was called in to help track him, Arciola said. State troopers also assisted in the search, Arciola added.
Christian was found two hours later in the rear wooded area of a home on Hillandale Road, Arciola said. It was later discovered he was wanted by Adult Probation for violating probation, and by the Darien Police Department for felony identity theft and forgery charges.
Evidence seized from the car indicates Christian had been using people’s personal information to facilitate identity theft related crimes, Arciola said. He was charged with the following felonies: criminal attempt at third-degree larceny, conspiracy to commit third-degree larceny, seven counts of third-degree identity theft and trafficking personal information. He was also charged with interfering with an officer and criminal impersonation, both misdemeanors, as well as violation of probation.
Christian was unable to post a $150,000 bond for the criminal charges and a $25,000 bond for the probation violation, and was held at the Westport Police Department. He is scheduled to appear in Norwalk Superior Court on July 26.
Zulawski was charged with criminal attempt at third-degree larceny and conspiracy to commit third-degree larceny, both felonies. She was unable to post a $10,000 bond and was held at police headquarters. She is scheduled to appear in court July 27.