Fleeing Suspect Attempts to Enter Occupied Vehicle and Resists Arrest
Citizen Aids Deputy During Struggle
The driver of a vehicle fled from a Spokane Valley Deputy until he struck a curb. The suspect ran from the car and, during the foot pursuit, attempted to enter an occupied vehicle, but the driver sped away before he could make it inside. The Deputy caught up to the suspect and tried to take him into custody, but he resisted arrest. Seeing the struggle, a citizen ran over to assist, stripped off the suspect’s necklace, which held a knife and helped the Deputy safely gain control of the suspect.
On August 22, 2020, Spokane Valley Deputy Travis West observed a green Pontiac Sunfire, occupied by two males, traveling in the opposite direction near 3rd and Havana. Deputy West noticed the vehicle did not have a front license plate as required by law and turned his marked patrol car around to initiate a traffic stop.
By the time he turned around, the driver, later identified as 25-year-old Eric R. Peery, had accelerated to a high rate of speed, southbound on Havana. Peery made an abrupt turn on 5th, traveling west at a high speed and recklessly passing another vehicle. Due to Peery’s reckless behavior, Deputy West activated his emergency lights, signaling Peery to pull over and stop. Instead, Perry made the choice to continue his attempt to flee.
Peery turned north on Freya, but due to the excess speed, he could not maintain control. Peery collided with the far-side curb and came to a stop in the middle of the road. As Deputy West pulled up to the car, Peery jumped out and began to flee on foot.
Deputy West identified himself and told Peery to stop. Peery continued to run with Deputy West gaining on him. Near 3rd and Freya, Peery attempted to get into an occupied vehicle stopped for the traffic light and actually opened the rear door of a car. Not knowing if Perry was armed and trying to steal the car or take the occupants hostage, Deputy West drew his sidearm, ordering Peery not to enter the vehicle. Peery looked up at Deputy West and fell backward and away from the car. The driver, and potential victim, accelerated and fled the area.
Deputy West quickly holstered his weapon and moved in to take Peery into custody, who began to struggle and resist. The Deputy noticed a sheathed dagger near Peery’s hands, which appeared to be attached to his necklace. Fearing Peery would grab the knife if he gained control of his hands, Deputy West delivered a knee strike to Peery’s lower back, but it had little effect.
During the continued struggle, a concerned citizen ran up to assist. Deputy West announced Peery had a knife as the Good Samaritan ripped it from Peery’s reach. With the continued help of the citizen, Deputy West gained control of Peery.
Arriving Deputies detained the male passenger who was cooperative and later released without charges.
The Good Samaritan said he witnessed Deputy West chasing Peery and Peery’s attempt to enter the occupied vehicle. He jumped in to help when he saw Peery resisting arrest. Deputy West thanked him for his assistance before he left the scene.
Peery refused medical assistance and declined to answer questions or make any statements. A check of his name revealed his driver’s license was suspended and a history of law enforcement contacts.
Peery was transported and booked into the Spokane County Jail for Attempting to Elude a Police Vehicle, Obstructing, Resisting Arrest, and Driving while Suspended 3rd Degree. He remains in jail with a current bond set at $10,000.
Deputy West worked to identify the identity of the driver of the vehicle Peery attempted to enter. He eventually made contact and learned she was scared but not injured.
This remains an active investigation and additional charges are possible.