One man died and another was booked on suspicion of vehicular homicide after a crash early Wednesday in Lakewood, according to police.
A car struck a utility pole while traveling westbound on 108th Street Southwest at Douglas Drive Southwest about 12:20 a.m., spokesman Lt. Chris Westby said. The 21-year-old driver, a Joint Base Lewis-McChord resident, then fled the scene.
A 32-year-old passenger was trapped in the vehicle, Westby said. West Pierce Fire & Rescue medics extricated the man, an Army reservist on active duty at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, but were unable to revive him.
Police used a K-9 unit to track the 21-year-old to a nearby apartment complex, Westby said, where the man verbally and physically assaulted the officers.
“We suspect impairment,” Westby said. “We’re just not sure what yet.”
Excessive speed is also believed to be a factor in the crash, he said.
The 21-year-old was taken to Saint Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma for treatment of his injuries, then booked into Pierce County Jail about 3:30 p.m. on suspicion of vehicular homicide, felony hit and run, resisting arrest and three counts of third-degree assault.
Lakewood police are shutting down 108th Street Southwest between Bridgeport Way and Main Street from 5-9 a.m. Thursday to continue their investigation into the crash.