Potential wrongdoers beware if intending to commit a crime in Milwaukie, Ore., especially if Tom Davis is around to chase you down.
Last Sunday around 7 p.m., Davis heard a noise outside his home and went to investigate. He saw a window had been broken in his van and that someone was inside the vehicle. He confronted the man who then swung a claw-hammer at Davis, barely missing his chest.
The attacker, Nathaniel Eiland, then took off on foot, hoping to elude Davis. But Davis, whose van had been stolen a week ago, wasn’t having any of it.
“I said you know what? This guy is not going to get away,” Davis told ABC affiliate KATU-TV News. “I just had it set in my mind. I don’t care what this guy does. He’s not going to get away.”
As Davis pursued Eiland, he dialed 911 and talked to a dispatcher from his cell phone as he continued to chase Eiland down.
In recording of the call, Davis can be heard yelling at Eiland:
“Stop dude! I’m not going to quit chasing. You better stop!”
Despite warnings from the 911 dispatcher to not put himself in any harm, as police were on the way, Davis would not be deterred.
Dispatcher: I don’t want you to put yourself in a dangerous spot.
Davis: Oh I’m not.
Davis: He’s still going.
Dispatcher: Are you still chasing him?
Davis: Yup … Can’t outrun me!
A few scuffles later, the recording ended and officers took Eiland into Clackamas County jail. He was arrested on counts of assault, criminal mischief and carrying a concealed weapon. Police found Eiland with a concealed dagger, a “slungshot” and a heavy cord that was weighted on the end. Eiland was already awaiting trial for a home burglary that he committed last October.
“Oh, he was mad,” Davis said. “He was mad when I caught him.”
Capt. Steve Bartol of the Milwaukie Police Department lauded Davis for his bravery.
“Even for police officers, chases are a dangerous thing,” Bartol told ABC News. “To have an unarmed civilian chasing him took courage on his part.”