On Wednesday, May 30, 2018, at about 12:25PM, Oregon State Police Troopers from the La Grande Area Command pursued a vehicle that was driving recklessly on Interstate 84, near milepost 258 westbound (two miles west of La Grande).
Preliminary investigation revealed that a Green 1997 Toyota Camry operated by a 17-year-old male from Boise, Idaho, was traveling westbound on Interstate 84 near milepost 278 at a high rate of speed. When OSP attempted to stop him for speed, the vehicle continued to drive in a reckless manner at speeds over 110 MPH and the attempt to stop it was terminated and Troopers disengaged due to safety reasons.
At milepost 258 westbound, a pursuit was initiated by another Trooper due to the continued reckless driving until milepost 257 when the Camry crashed into the guardrail and adjacent woods. The driver exited the vehicle armed with a machete and after a brief standoff, fled on foot. Troopers and Deputies established a perimeter and located the suspect. Troopers were able to talk the suspect into dropping his weapon and he was taken into custody for reckless driving, felony elude, and misdemeanor elude.
The right lane was closed for approximately two hours while the investigation was conducted and due to the vehicle becoming fully engulfed in flames after the crash.
OSP was assisted by the Union County Sheriff’s Office, Union County Juvenile Department, La Grande Fire Department, Department of Human Services (DHS) and Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT).