News Release News Release The City of Palo Alto
Communications Department
250 Hamilton Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94301


Subject :

Suspect Arrested in Crawlspace Following Foot Pursuit and Manhunt
Contact : Zach Perron, Lieutenant, Police    650-329-2413
Palo Alto, CA -- A police manhunt in the neighborhood north of downtown Palo Alto this afternoon ended with the arrest of the suspect after a police canine found him hiding in a crawlspace underneath a house.

On Thursday, August 30, 2012, at about 12:35 p.m., two officers on foot working traffic enforcement on University Avenue attempted to make a car stop for cell phone and gridlock violations.  The suspect accelerated away from officers and crashed his car into six occupied vehicles in the 300 and 400 blocks of University Avenue before jumping out, abandoning his vehicle, and running away on foot.  The officers gave chase as the suspect ran into the neighborhood north of downtown Palo Alto.

At one point during the chase, the suspect jumped into the driver's seat of a truck that was double-parked with the engine running in the 300 block of Waverley Street.  The owner of the truck, a male in his fifties who was standing nearby, hopped into the passenger seat in an attempt to regain control of his vehicle.  The suspect told the victim that he had a gun and ordered him to get out of the car.  The victim refused and began to physically struggle with the suspect.  The suspect drove the car about half a block with the victim still inside, before the victim was able to overpower the suspect and get his foot on the vehicle’s brake.  The suspect opted to get out of the car at that point, and continued to flee on foot.  The victim never saw a gun, nor was one ever found during this incident.

The officers last saw the suspect in the area of Hawthorne Avenue and Waverley Street, and started to receive reports from residents that the suspect was hopping fences in their yards.  The officers set up a containment perimeter, called in reinforcements, and began to search for the suspect yard-to-yard.

Several officers and detectives from the Palo Alto Police Department, assisted by canine teams from the East Palo Alto Police Department and the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, as well as deputies from the Stanford Department of Public Safety, methodically searched yard-to-yard and house-to-house.  When they reached a home in the 200 block of Waverley Street, they found evidence in the yard indicating that the suspect may be hiding in the crawlspace under the home.

After officers made a number of commands for the suspect to surrender if he was inside, they sent a police canine into the crawlspace to search for the suspect.  The canine located the suspect, who then refused commands by the officers to give up.  The canine bit the suspect, and police took him into custody at about 3:22 p.m.   Officers transported him to a local hospital for treatment of minor puncture wounds to one arm that he sustained from the canine bite.  Medical treatment at a hospital for injuries sustained as a result of a police canine bite is standard operating procedure.

The carjacking victim sustained minor scrapes and scratches to his hands and arms as a result of his struggle with the suspect, but he declined medical attention.  An occupant in one of the six vehicles with which the suspect’s vehicle collided sustained a complaint of pain to their back.  No officers were injured during this incident.

A preliminary search of the suspect’s abandoned vehicle revealed several pieces of commercial property that may be stolen.  Officers will be conducting follow-up in the coming days to determine the origin of that property.

The suspect, 19-year-old Cameron Conley of Oakland, will be booked tonight into the Santa Clara County Main Jail on a multitude of charges following his release from the hospital.  Those charges include three felonies (carjacking, kidnapping, and felony hit-and-run for the accident resulting in injury) and eight misdemeanors (resisting arrest, battery on the carjacking/kidnapping victim, prowling for being in the crawlspace, and five counts of misdemeanor hit-and-run).

The Palo Alto Police Department used the AlertSCC telephone notification system to notify residents in the neighborhood of the situation.  Residents can sign up for the system by registering for free at  

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call our 24-hour dispatch center at 650-329-2413.  Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to or sent via text message or voice mail to 650-383-8984.