Suspect arrested on 18 charges following Feb 2nd crime spree

Grants Pass Dept. of Public Safety

On February 2, 2021 at around 9:00 am, the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety (GPDPS) received a report of an unarmed robbery which occurred in the parking lot of Umpqua Bank, 117 NE F St. The suspect pushed the 73-year-old victim and stole money from his hand. Fortunately, the victim was not injured during this incident. Numerous officers responded to the scene but were unable to locate the suspect at that time.

Later that morning, GPDPS received numerous reports of thefts from motor vehicles and burglaries which occurred on Scoville Rd and NE Scenic Dr. Several officers responded to investigate the crimes that occurred at five properties in the area. During the course of the investigation, it was determined the suspect unlawfully entered two residences, one outbuilding, and at least five vehicles, committing thefts at most locations. The suspect also stole a vehilce from one property, but abandoned it after getting it stuck.

After reviewing surveillance videos and other evidence recovered from the crime scenes, officers discovered the suspect in the robbery was also responsible for the thefts and burglaries. The suspect was identifed as 39-year-old Michael Gemar-Rickards of Washington.

On February 15, 2021, Gemar-Rickards was arrested by the Jackson County Sheriff's Office (JCSO) on unrelated charges. JCSO coordinated with the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety and when Gemar-Rickards was released from their custody on February 17, 2021, he was arrested by GPDPS and transported to the Josephine County Jail. Gemar-Rickards was lodged on the following charges:

  • Robbery in the Third Degree
  • Harassment
  • Burglary in the First Degree (2 counts)
  • Burglary in the Second Degree
  • Unlawful Entry into a Motor Vehicle (5 counts)
  • Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle
  • Theft in the First Degree
  • Theft in the Second Degree (5 counts)
  • Theft in the Third Degree

Associated case numbers: 21-4898, 21-4916, 21-4920, 21-4929, 21-4930, 21-4964