Fugitive Who Fled Law Enforcement on Motorcycle Chase Into Redwood Valley Has Been Caught After 11 Days

Mark Nielsen as seen in Mendocino County Sheriff Booking Log Photos and the game camera footage of him while he fled law enforcement on April 6, 2020 [Pictures provided by Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office]

Mark Andrew Nielsen, the Lake County man who led Mendocino County law enforcement on a high-speed motorcycle chase and fled on foot into the wilds of Redwood Valley on April 6, has been caught and is now in custody. According to MCSO’s Public Information Officer Captain Greg Van Patten, Nielsen was taken into custody after deputies pulled over a vehicle he was driving for lighting violations in Calpella after which he was arrested without incident.

The Mendocino County Sheriff Booking Log indicates Nielsen was booked into the jail at 3:09 a.m. this morning and faces felony charges of possession of a firearm in the commission of a felony, possession of ammo by a prohibited person, being a felon/addict in possession of a firearm, carrying a loaded firearm in public, and evasion of a peace officer.

As per a press release from the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office, on April 6, 2021, deputies attempted to stop a motorcycle on Ukiah’s North State Street for having expired registration tabs. Mark Neilsen, the driver, fled law enforcement exceeding speeds of over 90 miles an hour and weaving into oncoming traffic. Due to safety concerns, the deputies discontinued the pursuit and later found the motorcycle on Redwood Valley’s Gabriel Lane.

Scanner traffic from that evening indicated witnesses overheard Nielsen say “I’m not going back to jail” as he left the motorcycle on foot.

According to the MCSO press release, a backpack was found nearby the motorcycle that contained a loaded handgun.

A shelter in place was activated for the neighborhoods nearby and deputies combed the area on foot and used an unmanned aerial vehicle to search for Nielsen, to no avail. A Redwood Valley resident did capture a photograph of Nielsen on his game cam as he fled law enforcement.

Nielsen was not caught that evening and remained on the loose until the traffic stop this morning that resulted in his arrest.

Nielsen had face numerous charges from Mendocino County law enforcement in the previous two months. On March 26, 2021, he was allegedly was found in a stolen Dodge Charger in possession of fentanyl pills. On February 25, 2021, Ukiah Police Department say he was found in a stolen BMW SUV parked near the intersection of North State Street and Kuki Road.

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