Crime

He beat his girlfriend, fled the cops, crashed, then lied about his name, prosecutors say

A Midland man beat his girlfriend as he drove on Pierce County freeways Sunday afternoon, then fled a Washington State Patrol trooper before crashing and fleeing the scene, prosecutors say.

The man then lied about his name, charging papers state, but that didn’t help him — the identity he gave to the arresting trooper came with a warrant.

The 28-year-old was arraigned Monday in Pierce County Superior Court on charges of unlawful imprisonment, second-degree identity theft, fourth-degree assault and reckless driving. He is being held in Pierce County Jail in lieu of $40,000 bail.

According to charging documents:

A little after 5 p.m. Sunday, the man was driving northbound on Interstate 5 before turning onto state Route 512 eastbound, assaulting his girlfriend as he went.

A fellow motorist called 911 and gave a complete description of the vehicle, including a license plate number.

A State Patrol trooper soon caught up to the vehicle, waiting until she could get assistance from Pierce County sheriff’s deputies before pulling him over.

The trooper pulled the vehicle over at the Portland Avenue exit and walked toward it. The woman opened the door and yelled something, but her boyfriend then sped down the freeway shoulder despite heavy traffic.

The trooper lost sight of the vehicle.

Another trooper saw the vehicle after it was in a crash near Canyon Road, and several people held the man down as the woman fled to a nearby ice cream shop.

The female trooper followed the woman to the ice cream shop, where the two then talked in the bathroom.

The woman said she had been with the man nearly a decade, but that he hits her.

The incident in the car started when she complained about being too hot; the man hit her in the face and pulled her hair.

The woman opened the door to yell to the trooper because her window didn’t work.

When the man was pulled over, he told her he was going to run from police because he was going to be arrested anyway.

Meanwhile, the man was arrested and gave someone else’s identity, not realizing that person had a felony arrest warrant and would have been driving while suspended, too.

He denied having hit his girlfriend.

But he admitted to drinking a fifth of vodka earlier Sunday and that he was driving the vehicle, and told them he had shot up with heroin earlier in the day.

When he was taken to the hospital, workers drained an abscess on his hip where he usually shoots up.

Kenny Ocker: 253-597-8627, @KennyOcker

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