Photo: Gerald Clasen, Kirstyn Paquet and Oleksandr Skalish
Ventura County – It was nearing the midnight hour on March 20th when, according to Ventura County Sheriff’s Department spokesman Det. Eric Tumbleson, a VCSD patrol deputy drove past a “recreational vehicle parked for sale on the side of the road” in the City of Fillmore.
As he cruised past the trailer bearing a “For Sale” sign, the cop spotted three people engaged in hooking it up to the hitch of their pickup truck.
Undoubtedly interested in why such activity would be conducted at such a late hour, the deputy made contact with 31-year-old Los Angeles resident Oleksandr Skalish, 44-year-old Gerald Clasen, and 32-year-old Kirstyn Paquet, also residents of Los Angeles.
After the usual salutations, Skalish claimed he had purchased the trailer, while Clasen and Paquet indicated that they were merely “good Samaritans” who were helping Skalish hook it up to the truck.
Moments later, Skalish took off on foot, leaving Clasen and Paquet standing there with the deputies. As additional patrol units arrived on the scene, it was determined that the trailer did not belong to any of the subjects, nor had they ever had any contact with the owner-seller.
A quick records check indicated that the pickup truck on the scene “was reported stolen out of the Los Angeles area.” At that point, Clasen and Paquet were taken into custody and transported to Ventura County Jail, where they were charged with vehicle theft and conspiracy to commit a crime.
A week later, Skalish was located sitting in the Los Angeles County Jail on a charge of “an unrelated vehicle theft.” VCSD detectives then obtained an arrest warrant for Skalish. Upon his release from LACJ, Skalish was transported on May 4th to Ventura County Jail where he was charged with vehicle theft and conspiracy to commit a crime.
Photos: Courtesy Ventura County Jail Booking