Slide stolen from Pasco playground recovered three months later

stolen slide
Images Courtesy of the Pasco Police, Facebook

PASCO, Wash. — In December 2020, the Pasco Police Department (PPD) announced that a playground slide was stolen from Tierra Vida park at 3325 Tierra Vida Ln. Very little information regarding the suspect was provided, making it a particularly difficult case to crack. Luckily, they aren’t the only local law enforcement group protecting Eastern Washington.

According to a post on the Pasco Police Facebook page, Detective Julie Lee helped recover the slide while working on a completely unrelated case. Local authorities say that the slide was located inside a trailer home in Burbank, Wash.

She was looking into a string of robberies in which the suspect cut the catalytic converter from local vehicles. According to the post, people sell catalytic converters to scrap metal dealers for their heavy metal components. Not only are the metals valuable, but they’re difficult to replace and can have grave consequences if not properly tended to.

Officers put out descriptors for the suspects in this string of catalytic converter robberies, leading Detective Lee to a vehicle that matched the description of the thief’s car. After gathering proper warrants, Detective Lee visited the Burbank trailer home and was surprised to find the slide attached to a child’s bunk bed. It was completely re-painted and mounted onto the bed as a fun treat for a small child.

Not only did officers recover the 400-lb slide, but they also located the collection of catalytic converters. A 30-year-old male named Dustin Allen Bushnell was arrested and booked into the Walla Walla County Jail on an investigative hold for Possession of Stolen Property.

The rest of the playground equipment was ditched following the robbery, but at least that slide has been recovered safe and sound.