DUI Suspect Slams into 2 Patrol Cars in an Attempt to Flee
Spokane Valley Deputies pinned in a DUI suspect’s vehicle while he was passed out in the driver’s seat. When the suspect was contacted, he attempted to flee, ramming both patrol cars with his truck before fleeing on foot. He was taken into custody and booked into the Spokane County Jail for DUI, two counts of Hit and Run, and an unrelated Reckless Driving warrant.
On April 15, 2023, at approximately 5:55 pm, Spokane Valley Deputy K. Bitzer responded to a suspicious vehicle call in the 2000 block of N. Edgerton Road. The caller stated an occupied silver Ford F150 had been parked on the roadway all day. The male occupant would open the vehicle door when children were outside but close the door when adults were around. The caller was concerned by this suspicious behavior and due to the length of time he and the vehicle remained at the location.
When Deputy Bitzer arrived, she approached the driver’s side, noting the truck did not have license plates. The driver, later identified as 22-year-old Gabriel M. Cramer, was slumped over in the driver’s seat with his head resting on the steering wheel. Cramer was breathing and had a piece of tin foil with two melted, small blue pills, believed to be fentanyl, on his thigh, which is indicative of illegal drug use. He also had a BIC-style lighter in one hand and his cellphone in the other.
Believing Cramer was under the influence of fentanyl, Deputy Bitzer requested a second unit to assist. She checked the vehicle's VIN and learned the truck was last registered in November 2020.
When Deputy J. Gallaher arrived, he positioned his marked patrol vehicle in front of Cramer’s truck Deputy Bitzer positioned her marked patrol car at the rear of the truck to take away any avenue of escape.
Cramer began to wake up as the Deputies approached, telling him to roll down his windows. Cramer did start to roll them down but only a little. They told him to roll them down further, and he would, but only a little more. Cramer then reached up, started the truck, and shifted it into drive, slamming into the patrol car, and he threw it into reverse and accelerated, ramming into the second patrol car. Cramer continued doing this while spinning the tires, causing a large amount of thick smoke in the air as Deputy Gallaher placed a set of stop sticks under the tire.
Suddenly, Cramer opened the driver’s door and jumped out, fleeing on foot and Deputy Bitzer ordered him to stop as she gave chase. During the foot pursuit, he tripped on the sidewalk near Park Road and Indiana and fell on the ground, where the Deputies took him into custody without further incident.
A check of Cramer’s name revealed an active misdemeanor warrant (Reckless Driving) for his arrest. A search warrant was obtained to retrieve a blood sample for testing, and his vehicle was seized pending a search warrant.
Cramer was transported and booked into the Spokane County Jail for DUI, two counts of Hit and Run, and an unrelated Reckless Driving warrant, where he remains with a total case bond set at $11,500.
Spokane Regional Animal Protection Service (SCRAPS) responded to take custody of the dog inside Cramer’s vehicle.
This remains an active investigation, and additional charges are possible.