The Spokane County Sheriff's Office is offering a heartfelt thank you to three bystanders who helped a deputy take a fleeing suspect into custody over the weekend.
It happened Sunday afternoon in the area of 57th and Regal when Deputy Shawn Hause saw a Chevy Camaro eastbound on 57th east of Regal. Deputy Hause had seen the car earlier in the day parked near Mt. Vernon and 57th and noticed it didn't have license plates or a trip permit in the window and planned to tag it as abandoned later in the day.
Deputy Hause saw the vehicle was driven by a man he had contact with in the last couple of weeks, identified as 46-year-old Jason B. Farmer, and Deputy Hause knew Farmer's license was suspended.
When Hause began making the traffic stop, Farmer sped off. Farmer slammed on his brakes causing the rear tires to lockup and smoke before quickly turning north on Moran Ct. and stopping. Deputy Hause pulled up and spoke with the man he recognized as Farmer, who admitted his license was suspended and started to call a friend on his cell phone. Deputy Hause told Farmer he needed to step out of the vehicle and he was under arrest, but Farmer refused to get out. Hause told Farmer again to put his phone down and exit the car. When he refused a second time, he was pepper sprayed.
Farmer eventually got out of the car, but instead of putting his hands behind his back and facing away, Farmer faced the deputy. Farmer started backing away saying, "Don't shoot me!" before running away on foot. Deputy Hause gave chase and called for backup.
Farmer continued to reach toward his right pocket as he ran. He ran around the side of a house, through a garage and circled back toward his car. He turned east on 57th. A couple of blocks later, Deputy Hause saw a gold Nissan 350Z pull in front of Farmer two different times. At first, Deputy Hause though the car was there to help Farmer, but quickly realized the car was trying to stop Farmer from getting away.
Witnessing the chase, another civilian pulled up next to Deputy Hause and asked if he needed a ride, which the deputy gladly accepted. The witness quickly caught up to the running Farmer and got out of the Nissan. Farmer continued yelling, "Don't shoot me" as he ran across 57th and then stopped. This time when deputy Hause ordered him to get on the ground and place his hands behind his back, he followed directions and was taken into custody without incident.
A second vehicle pulled up and the driver identified himself as an off duty officer with Sunnyside Police. He offered to help. The initial bystander who offered to help went back to the site of the traffic stop and guarded the deputy's car, while the Sunnyside officer and Deputy Hause walked Farmer back.
Farmer was read his rights and told the deputy he ran because he was scared and thought he would be shot. Deputy Hause told Farmer he didn't even touch his gun and asked Farmer why he would think that. Farmer said lately cops shoot black men who run from them. Farmer apologized several times and said he made a very bad decision to run.
Farmer was booked into the Spokane County Jail for driving with a suspended license, criminal trespass, resisting arrest and failure to obey law enforcement.
(story: Matt Pusatory, KHQ Local News Web Producer; image: KHQ.com)