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Janitor foils robbery at Gresham Subaru

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Police return $8,500 in stolen goods to local car dealership

OUTLOOK PHOTO: JOSH KULLA - Gresham Subaur is located at 1925 East Powell Boulevard.Over $8,500 worth of stolen merchandise was returned to Gresham Subaru after a fast-thinking janitor interrupted a burglary in progress, the Gresham Police Department reports.

The thief — allegedly armed with a handgun — smashed a pane of glass at the dealership's service drive at 9:18 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 8, just a few minutes after the East Powell Boulevard business closed.

He grabbed barcode scanners, two iPads, a Microsoft tablet plus seven sets of brand-new car keys. The night janitor spotted him pilfering snack foods in a hallway.

"The employee starts questioning him — 'Hey, do you work here?'" explained Officer Ben Costigan. "The guy didn't answer and just kept walking. Then the suspect ran."

The janitor, whose name isn't being released due to privacy concerns, chased after the man, who allegedly turned around and pointed a gun at the cleaning worker from five feet away.

The janitor backed off and dialed 911, Officer Costigan said.

MCSO PHOTO - Brandon James Dixon, 33. Police arrested Brandon James Dixon, 33, a block away, at Del Taco on Northeast Burnside Road. Cruisers were already in the area after an unrelated call regarding a car prowler at Gresham Ford.

Dixon is charged with numerous counts of robbery, burglary, theft, menacing, felon in possession of a firearm and unlawful use of a weapon. A canine unit wasn't able to recover the gun, but police are sticking with the charges.

Dixon has previously been convicted of burglary, theft, unauthorized use of a vehicle, second-degree criminal mischief and driving while uninsured.

Subaru General Manager Nick Smit said the janitor would receive gift cards to Fred Meyers as thanks for his bravery.

"The cameras got a full view of everything," Smit said. "(Thieves) don't want to mess with us."