Canyon chase arrestee ID'd as Nevada man

Police say charges will include grand theft auto
By: Loryll Nicolaisen, Journal staff writer
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Michael John Lenning, 24, of Sparks, Nev., was arrested Saturday and booked at the Placer County Jail after leading local law enforcement on a chase in and out of the American River near the Lake Clementine Trail and Foresthill Bridge. Lenning remained in custody as of Sunday evening. Jenny Gardemeyer, state park ranger, said Sunday that Lenning’s charges include grand theft auto and felony evasion of a peace officer. Booking information available at the Placer County Jail Web site indicates Lenning also has an out of county warrant in El Dorado County. “We’re also going to charge him with resisting arrest, possession of stolen property and possession of stolen property out of state,” Gardemeyer said. Gardemeyer reportedly saw Lenning spin out and perform a U-turn at the Mammoth Bar OHV area around 1 p.m. Saturday. Lenning reportedly fled the area while a second motorist driving a white pickup pulled up to block Gardemeyer. This vehicle had yet to be found, she said Sunday. A state park ranger spotted Lenning’s truck at the Lower Lake Clementine entrance Saturday afternoon, and followed Lenning after he rammed through the Lake Clementine Trail gate. When Lenning came to a spot where he could not pass, he reportedly left the vehicle and attempted to flee on foot, Gardemeyer said, coming in and out of the American River and leading local law enforcement officers on a chase that lasted more than an hour before his arrest. The Chevy truck Lenning allegedly drove Saturday, which was reported stolen, contained items including cigarette cartons and racks of candy, Gardemeyer said. Local authorities are working with detectives in two Nevada counties to see if Lenning might be linked to either of two recent convenience-store robberies.