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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Man suspected of striking deputies’ patrol cars in stolen vehicle later arrested

UPDATED: Tue., Jan. 25, 2022

The driver of a stolen car is accused of hitting two patrol vehicles while fleeing last week before he was arrested near the Spokane River in northwest Spokane.

Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies attempted to contact the driver, Steven E. Bronowski, around 10 a.m. Jan. 19 after a caller said the man appeared to be passed out in a car on the 1200 block of West Wedgewood Avenue in north Spokane, according to a sheriff’s office news release.

The release said deputies arrived and observed a parked 2009 Honda CRV with a man breathing, but slumped forward. A check of the vehicle’s license plate and VIN showed the CRV had been reported stolen.

Deputies positioned marked patrol cars to the front and rear bumpers of the CRV to try to prevent the man from fleeing, they said. Several commands over the public address system did not appear to wake the man, but he finally woke after deputies knocked on the side window.

The man put the keys in the ignition, started the CRV, and slammed into one of the patrol cars, the release said. He then backed into the patrol car positioned behind him before speeding away. Deputies stopped their pursuit on North Driscoll Boulevard near West Queen Place because of safety concerns.

About 10 minutes later, Spokane police found the stolen CRV on the 2900 block of West Grace Avenue, deputies said. A man was seen running from the CRV toward the Spokane River on T.J. Meenach Drive.

With the assistance of a Spokane Regional Air Support Unit Unmanned Aerial System team, Bronowski was found hiding in thick brush by the river, the release said. Bronowski allegedly ran from a deputy despite orders to stop. He eventually followed commands and was arrested.

Once medically cleared, he was booked into the Spokane County Jail on suspicion of theft of a motor vehicle, possession of a stolen motor vehicle, attempting to elude a police vehicle and two counts of hit-and-run/unattended vehicle. A judge set his bond at $10,000 on these charges. He was also being held on an unrelated second-degree domestic violence assault charge with a total bond set at $60,000. Bronowski was not listed in the Spokane County Jail inmate roster Tuesday night.

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