K9 Gunnar Locates Driver after Early Morning Pursuit
Spokane County Sheriff’s Office Deputies arrested two suspects after an early morning pursuit. The driver of a stolen vehicle lost control and crashed into a guardrail before fleeing on foot. Deputy Hunt and K9 Gunnar conducted a track and located the driver who continued to fight and resist arrest. Both the driver and female passenger were booked into jail on multiple charges.
On August 23, 2017, at approximately 3:55 a.m., Spokane County Deputies responded to a report of a vehicle prowler in the area of the 3000 block of Spangle Waverly Road.
The victim reported he was sleeping in the backseat of his vehicle when a suspect entered his car and stole his keys before leaving the parking lot in a vehicle. The victim later advised the suspect vehicle had returned to the parking lot and parked. The victim said he retrieved his keys and provided a description of the male he believed was high on meth, and female.
When Deputy Skye Ortiz arrived, he observed the victim’s vehicle and what appeared to be the suspect vehicle, an older 4-door Lincoln, but it appeared to be unoccupied. As he drove toward the victim’s vehicle, the victim stepped out of his car and began pointing toward the Lincoln. Deputy Ortiz observed the brake light of the Lincoln activate and it immediately pulled out of the parking lot.
Deputy Ortiz activated his emergency light and siren as he tried to catch up to the Lincoln, which was accelerating rapidly east on Spangle Waverly Road. The driver, later identified as 27 year-old Dustin D. Wegleitner, looked back at the patrol vehicle but failed to stop. Wegleitner continued to flee southbound on Old U.S. Hwy. 195. Deputy Ortiz observed both Wegleitner and the passenger, later identified as 31 year-old Amber L. Donnelly, reaching around inside the vehicle and under the seats. Wegleitner began swerving back and forth as they approached Davis Road. At times during the pursuit, Wegleitner accelerated to estimated speeds over 100 mph.
North of Prairie View Road, Wegleitner lost control of the vehicle and struck a guard rail, went on top of it and slid before coming to rest. Both Wegleitner and Donnelly exited the vehicle and fled on foot, east through the field, despite several commands over the PA system to stop.
Donnelly final stopped running and walked back to Deputy Ortiz’s vehicle where she was taken into custody. Deputy Jason Hunt, his K9 partner Gunnar, and additional deputies arrived at the scene to assist. Not knowing if Wegleitner was armed, several K9 announcements were given for Wegleitner to surrender as Deputy Hunt and K9 Gunnar began a track. Approximately a mile later, K9 Gunnar located and contact Wegleitner hiding in some bushes. Wegleitner punched K9 Gunnar and tried to flee but he was eventually taken into custody. K9 Gunnar was not injured.
After being advised of his rights, Wegleitner told Deputy Ortiz he took the keys out of the victim’s vehicle. He returned to the vehicle to take items from it when he was confront by the victim and gave his keys back. Wegleitner stated he fled because the car he was driving was stolen and he had drugs (methamphetamine) which he stated he ripped open the baggie and tried to swallow during the pursuit.
Wegleitner received medical attention prior to being transported and booked into the Spokane County Jail for Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle, Attempting to Elude a Police Vehicle, Vehicle Prowling 2nd Degree, Harming a Police Dog, Hit & Run-Property Damage, and Obstructing.
Donnelly was transported and booked into the Spokane County Jail for Vehicle Prowling and Obstructing.
Deputy Mark Gregory
Spokane County Sheriff’s Office
Spokane Valley Police Department
Public Information Officer
Spokane News Original Live coverage of this incident can be found HERE