Kent Police arrest 14-year-old driver after short, slow pursuit

King County Sheriff’s Office helicopter assists with finding Kent boy in June 28 incident

Kent Police arrested a 14-year-old Kent boy for investigation of DUI, eluding, resisting and obstructing after a recent late-night incident that included pursuit by the King County Sheriff’s office helicopter.

An officer, working a DUI/distracted driving emphasis, saw a vehicle at about 11:20 p.m. Friday, June 28 failing to stop at a stop sign on West Meeker Street, according to a July 1 Kent Police social media post and an email from Kent Police Assistant Chief Jarod Kasner.

The driver was drifting outside his lane travel, and when the officer attempted to pull him over, he slowly ran through a red light, according to police. The driver reportedly continued to ignore the fully lit up police vehicle, so the officer activated his siren. The car continued its slow progress, and as it rounded a corner the vehicle hit a sidewalk.

Eventually, the driver reportedly slowly ran another red light, then continued to drive on after losing a tire, according to police. His slow attempt at eluding ended on West James Street after he struck another curb and could no longer continue.

The driver, and only occupant of the vehicle, quickly exited the car and reportedly ran away towards a nearby apartment complex, according to police. More officers had responded to assist when the eluding started, and one officer pulled up in time to see what appeared to be a handgun in the suspect’s possession as he ran off.

Officers pursued him on foot, giving commands to stop but the teen continued to flee, according to police. King County Sheriff’s Office Guardian 1 helicopter radioed that they could see the suspect jumping fences and saw him hide inside a top opening freezer in a backyard.

The officers kept behind cover and patiently used de-escalation techniques while giving him multiple commands to exit, according to police. Guardian 1 also gave commands via their public address system, but he refused to leave the freezer for over 20 minutes.

A Federal Way Police Department K-9 team responded to assist, and shortly after the K9s arrival, the lid to the freezer began to creep open. The officers approached the freezer to attempt to take the suspect into custody, but he refused to acknowledge them and curled up with his hands underneath his body, according to police.

Eventually, the officers were able to take the teen into custody. An officer authored a blood warrant to obtain the boy’s blood to be tested for drugs and/or alcohol. A judge approved the warrant, and his blood was taken by a technician at a local hospital. Police did not report finding any weapon.

Officers transported the boy to have his fingerprints taken and he was eventually released to his mother after being declined for booking into King County juvenile detention, according to police.

“King County juvenile has criteria for accepting bookings and the charges did not meet those requirements,” Kasner said.

The case has been forwarded to the Kent Detective Unit for further investigation and filing. He potentially faces charges of DUI, eluding, resisting and obstructing, according to police.

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