Sex Offender Leads Spokane Police on Wild Chase - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

FIRST ON KHQ.COM: Sex Offender Leads Spokane Police on Wild Chase

Christopher Lee Gilbert Christopher Lee Gilbert

SPOKANE, Wash. - A man who failed to register as a sex offender led police on a wild chase Monday afternoon. The man is identified as 40-year-old Christopher Lee Gilbert. The chase started in West Central Spokane and ended at Grace & Monroe.

Authorities tell KHQ that for 4 blocks of the chase Gilbert drove backwards at 40mph. Authorities used a pit maneuver to get Gilbert to stop. Luckily no one was hurt. Gilbert is expected to make his first court appearance on Tuesday morning.

Official Press Release:

Spokane Police Officer Terry Preuninger was patrolling the area of 1100 West Jackson today about 2:30pm. A citizen approached him, pointing to a man sitting in a parked gray Honda. The citizen said the man had a warrant for his arrest.

As Ofc. Preuninger pulled up behind the Honda, the man (Chris L. Gilbert 9/23/69) immediately put the vehicle into reverse, swerved around Ofc. Preuninger and drove recklessly through the residential neighborhood, backwards. Ofc. Preuninger made a safe u-turn and followed Gilbert, who was accelerating in reverse. Gilbert lost control after at least four blocks, and then slowed to let the female passenger out of the car. The female was concealing something in her arms, and was unable to get out of the car quickly. Gilbert realized Ofc. Preuninger was still attempting to apprehend him, so he accelerated down an alley. He slowed the car; the female (a person of interest who has not been identified) was able to get out of the car before Gilbert sped away.

Ofc. Preuninger was able to PIT (Pursuit Immobilization Technique) the Honda, in an effort to end the pursuit. This technique was successful, and Gilbert raised his arms in an effort to show that he was being compliant. As soon as Ofc. Preuninger opened his door, Gilbert accelerated up and over a sidewalk, failing to stop for a stop sign on Monroe at Grace, and continued west on Grace. Gilbert was clearly unconcerned for the heavy afternoon traffic on Monroe Street.

Ofc. Preuninger safely waited for traffic on Monroe before crossing. Ofc. Erin Raleigh was able to follow Gilbert west on Grace until Ofc. Bruce Palmer drove east on Grace, essentially blocking Gilbert's vehicle. Officers Preuninger, Raleigh and Palmer took Gilbert into custody. They found a knife concealed in Gilbert's pants with a blade over a foot long. Gilbert also had a fixed blade knife in his pocket.

The Honda Giblet was driving had been stolen sometime Saturday night from the area of Ash and Glass. The owner of the car responded to the scene to recover his vehicle. License plates on the Honda had been stolen from a different vehicle yesterday from the area of 1000 West Spofford.

While searching for the missing female passenger, Ofc. Palmer located another stolen Honda, just north of 1100 West Jackson. That car had been stolen yesterday from 4500 North Alberta. Unfortunately, two shotguns and a handgun had been in the trunk of the vehicle at the time it was stolen; those firearms have not been recovered.

Gilbert was booked into Spokane County Jail for Attempting to Elude a Police Officer, Possession of Stolen Property – Motor Vehicle, Possession of Stolen Property – license plates, and his Department of Corrections warrant for Failing to Register as a Sex Offender.

The investigation continues into possible stolen property recovered from the Honda that Gilbert was driving.

  • To visit the county's sex offender website click here

 

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