A 22-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of multiple crimes following a dangerous police chase through Vancouver’s city streets and freeways Wednesday morning.
A Vancouver police officer spotted a vehicle at 7:23 p.m. driving south on Andresen Road toward Mill Plain Boulevard. As the car turned west onto Mill Plain, it started to erratically maneuver on the road, ignoring traffic signals and speeding in oncoming lanes of traffic, Vancouver Police Department spokeswoman Kim Kapp said.
It was clear the driver was putting other drivers and pedestrians in danger, so the officer initiated a traffic stop, Kapp said. However, the driver, later identified as Kyler L. Purcell, refused to pull over and a pursuit ensued.
The suspect’s vehicle was lost in the Mill Plain and Grand boulevards area, but Clark County sheriff’s deputies picked up the chase as it entered southbound Interstate 5 and “continued to operate in an outrageous manner despite not being pursued” at that moment, Kapp said.
Washington State Patrol troopers and deputies once again tried unsuccessfully to pull over Purcell, who continued down the freeway, and at times, traveled south in the northbound lanes, and later, east in the westbound lanes of state Highway 14, Kapp said.
Vancouver police once again took the lead on the pursuit near Southeast 192nd Avenue. It ended in the parking lot of a business off the avenue at Southeast 20th Street, according to police.
“During the subsequent investigation, two passengers in the vehicle made statements indicating they were unlawfully restrained in the vehicle (not allowed to get out) by the driver,” Kapp said.
Purcell was booked into the Clark County Jail on suspicion of eluding police, methamphetamine-related DUI, reckless endangerment and two counts of unlawful imprisonment. His vehicle was also seized for a search because a trooper canine gave an alert for drugs.
Correction: The above article originally reported that the incident started at 10:23 a.m. It started at 7:23 p.m.