Woods Cross police: ‘Drunk uncle’ takes car with 4-year-old niece inside, flees police at 100+ mph
Police say an intoxicated driver topped 100 mph while fleeing officers in south Davis and Salt Lake counties with his 4-year-old niece in the car Saturday, Oct. 29, 2022. Photo: Gephardt Daily/Samuel Price
WOODS CROSS, Utah, Oct. 29, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — Police say an intoxicated driver topped 100 mph Saturday night while fleeing officers in south Davis and Salt Lake counties with his 4-year-old niece in the car.
Woods Cross police responded about 9:20 pm to an apartment complex on the east side of the city where tenants were having a Halloween party, Assistant Chief Adam Osoro said.
Family members told police that one person got “pretty intoxicated” at the party, and the man’s brother was preparing to drive him home, Osoro told Gephardt Daily.
After the man put his 4-year-old daughter in the car but before he could get behind the wheel, “drunk uncle decided he was going to slide over and take the vehicle,” Osoro said.
Officers quickly located the vehicle and a pursuit ensued, he said.
“He immediately began driving recklessly,” Osoro said. “Initially, the reports were the driver was traveling in excess of 100 mph,” leading Woods Cross police to terminate the pursuit.
“Once we were able to verify the driver was not a parent, we made the decision to continue pursing the vehicle,” he said.
The approximately 25-minute pursuit ended at a cargo terminal at Salt Lake City International Airport following successful attempts to spike the vehicle’s tires, which “really reduced the speed,” Osoro said.
A K-9 unit was deployed to take the man into custody, he said. The child was unharmed and returned to her family, Osoro said.
“It was a good outcome,” he said. “We’re proud of our officers and the officers from other agencies [who assisted]. We’re glad we were able to get him off the road and the child back to the parents unharmed.”
The pursuit officers involved from the Woods Cross, West Bountiful, North Salt Lake and Salt Lake City police departments, Osoro said.
The man was taken to an area hospital for evaluation, police said. He is expected to be arrested for investigation of DUI, failure to stop at the command of police, reckless driving and other possible charges.