ELSINORE — It started as a report of a driver running a stop sign in a construction zone near Hatch, but escalated into a chase that lasted approximately 35 miles across two counties.
The first report of a van running a stop sign came early in the afternoon, said Lt. Clay Morgan, Utah Highway Patrol. Another report of the same van running another stop sign in Panguitch was reported later.
“We think he hit a construction vehicle in Panguitch and left,” Morgan said.
Piute County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Matt Whittaker spotted the van south of Circleville and attempted to pull it over, but the van’s driver — later identified as Ryan Williams, 45, St. George — refused to stop.
Another deputy was able to spike the van’s front tires near Marysvale, but the suspect still refused to pull over.
“He was a danger to other people on the road,” Morgan said. He said Williams was not only refusing to pull over, but was also trying to run officers off the road.
A UHP vehicle was able to hit the van, which had been running on bare rims for approximately 20 miles, in what is called a PIT maneuver, or pursuit intervention technique. The PIT is used to disable vehicles that refuse to stop. The van attempted to get moving again, but hit another motorist.
At that point Williams gave up, exited the vehicle and put his hands on his head.
“We didn’t have any more problems after that,” Morgan said. He was taken into custody. Charges are pending.