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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: railroad tracks

2 cars crash on tracks in wild chase

A wild car chase on Sunday ended in a father and son's vehicles crashing off railroad tracks into trees and a suspected thief getting away, police said Tuesday.

Authorities are asking for tips on the car thief, who they say stole a car from a Spokane Valley home then ditched it near East 16th Avenue and South Dishman-Mica Road after being pursued by the owner and his father.

The father had moved his son's car about 4:30 a.m. because it was partially blocking his vehicle. He left the keys in the ignition, then went inside to wait for his car to start because of a problem with its alarm system, according to the Spokane County Sheriff's Office.

He looked out the window to see his son's vehicle being driven north on South Dishman Road. He and his son got in his car and gave chase north on Dishman to East 8th Avenue, where the car thief began driving south on railroad tracks and they followed.

The car thief and the father-son team lost control of the cars and drove into a group of trees just south of 16th, where the suspect ran north on Dishman and the victims lost sight of him.

He's described as a white man, about 6-feet-tall and wearing a blue shirt and black pants. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

Police: Drunk mistook railway for road

A drunken driver mistook railroad tracks for a roadway early Sunday in southwest Spokane County.

Miles D. Matthews, 43, jumped from his  2002 Mercury Mountaineer just before a train hit it head on about 2 a.m. near Cheney-Spokane and Scribner roads in Marshall, the Spokane County Sheriff's Office said today.

Matthews had turned onto the railroad tracks and tried to drive toward Spokane with one tire on a rail and the other in the rocky roadbed, according to a news release.

The Mountaineer became stuck on loose rock, and Matthews tried removing it until a southbound freight train approached.

The train knocked the SUV backward into a culvert shelter made of railroad ties and rock. The crash totaled the vehicle and caused minor damage the freight engine, but no one was injured.

Matthews, of Spokane, was booked into jail on a drunken driving charge. He also was issued an infraction for stopping/parking on railroad tracks and failure to provide proof of insurance.

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