Fleeing suspect ends up in Chewy’s capable paws

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K9 Support NW/courtesy photo Grant County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Nicholas Overland and K-9 Chewbacca.

MOSES LAKE — A Moses Lake man suspected of initiating a vehicle chase with police was apprehended early Monday morning night by Grant County Sheriff’s Office’s K9 Chewbacca, according to law enforcement.

Officers with the Moses Lake Police Department allegedly pursued Andrew J. Gilbert, 37, at around 7:20 p.m. Sunday, after witnessing him make a traffic infraction, Chief Kevin Fuhr said Tuesday. The pursuing officer performed a U-turn and began to follow, and Gilbert, who was reportedly driving the fleeing Jeep, allegedly drove away at high speeds.

Police said Gilbert led the pursuing officer on a chase towards the Larson Air Force Base, running a stop sign along the way.

When Gilbert allegedly drove into a dead-end cul-de-sac near Knolls Vista Elementary, performed a U-turn and drove at high speed directly towards the officer’s vehicle, Fuhr said. The pursuing officer swerved out of Gilbert’s way to avoid a head-on collision, and Gilbert fled the scene, according to police.

Not long after, the fleeing Jeep was found abandoned miles away on Arlington Drive near North Elementary School. With aid from Deputy Chewbacca, law enforcement was able to track the fleeing subject through icy snow to a nearby residence, whose occupants gave officers the name of Gilbert.

Officers apprehended Gilbert at a motel in Moses Lake around seven hours later, Fuhr said. Gilbert was arrested in the wee hours of the morning for felony eluding, attempted vehicular assault and driving with license suspended, and booked into Grant County Jail.

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