On the afternoon of January 19, Utah Highway Patrol (UHP) troopers spotted a Volkswagen Jetta westbound toward Kanab, traveling at speeds exceeding 90 mph - upon the trooper initiating pursuit, the vehicle sped up further to well over 100 mph. According to UHP, the trooper felt it was safer to radio ahead rather than attempt to overtake the vehicle. Kane County Deputies, Kanab City Police (KPD) and a few more UHP officers were able to respond and prepare spike strips a few miles down the road. By the time the vehicle reached the first set of spikes set up by the deputies, it had reached speeds exceeding 130 mph - the strips deflated the vehicle’s front driver’s side tire.
According to reports from the Kane County Sheriff’s Office, the vehicle came to a full stop when it reached the second set of spike strips, but when the deputies stepped out to order the driver and passenger out of the car, the suspect accelerated again, flattening the rest of his tires over the two spike strips. The deflated tires caused the vehicle to fail closer to Kanab, where KPD and Kane County Sheriff’s Office were able to locate the car and take the suspect and his passenger into custody. The two were searched, as was their vehicle - no contraband was reported in their possession, and they were turned back over to the Highway Patrol to remain in custody.
Sergeant J.D. Wright of the Sheriff’s Office says of the incident, “I want to give credit to our guys, the city police, the highway patrol and even the BLM had a hand ready to respond, all to make sure what could potentially be a bad situation had an okay resolution - everyone had a hand, and I know our guys did their part.”