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UPDATE: Police switch alleged passenger and driver who reportedly ran from Ross Dress for Less heist, crashing into and killing Milwaukie resident Kris Lee Nickelson.

Editor's note: Police on Jan. 13 switched the alleged driver and passenger in this case. Read the latest news article here.

What started as a theft case from Ross Dress for Less at the Clackamas Town Center has resulted in the death of a Milwaukie resident and manslaughter charges against an Oregon City resident.

On Tuesday, Sept. 21, members of the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office and U.S. Marshals Service arrested Anthony Michael Lucero, 27, as the suspect in the Sept. 16 case. The case began shortly after 8 p.m. when deputies responded to a report of a theft from Ross, 11211 S.E. 82nd Ave., in unincorporated Clackamas County.

Sheriff's deputies arrived in the area and attempted to stop the suspect vehicle, but Lucero allegedly fled the scene. Lucero has been indicted on previous charges of reckless driving and attempts to elude police in March, according to court records that showed he had to forfeit $3,000 in bail money due to his failure to attend court dates.

In fleeing the Clackamas Town Center, Lucero allegedly failed to obey a traffic control device and struck a vehicle in the intersection of Bell Avenue and Southeast Johnson Creek Boulevard. CCSO Deputy John Wildhaber said Lucero then exited the suspect vehicle and ran from the scene of the alleged hit-and-run, further eluding authorities.

CCSO identified the driver of the vehicle struck by Lucero as Kris Lee Nickelson, 54, of Milwaukie. Nickelson was treated by deputies and Clackamas Fire paramedics at the scene and transported to a local hospital by AMR, where he later died.

Lucero's passenger in the suspect vehicle, Aunajae Devine Smith, 22, of Portland, was transported to a local hospital with serious injuries. She later checked herself out of the hospital, Wildhaber said.

CCSO's K9 Unit, Milwaukie Police Department and Portland Police Bureau assisted in the initial search for Lucero on Sept. 16.

Anyone with additional information regarding the case is urged to call 503-723-4949 or use the online email form at Please reference CCSO Case #21-019997.

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