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Watch: Fleeing suspect asks Seattle PD officers for cigarettes after getting caught hiding in dumpster

Seattle PD used a terminator device to flatten the tires of the suspect’s stolen vehicle; the suspect fled on foot was later found hiding in a dumpster by a K-9 unit

By Joanna Putman

SEATTLE — Body camera footage released by the Seattle Police Department shows a pursuit of a man driving a vehicle erratically before hiding in a dumpster and asking officers for a cigarette, according to a department police blotter release.

Officers arrested a 30-year-old man on May 5 after he attempted to flee in a stolen vehicle, resulting in injuries to two people, according to the release.

Video shows officers finding the suspect sleeping in the driver’s seat of a stolen car parked on a street. Upon initiating a traffic stop, the officers deployed terminator devices, which caused three of the vehicle’s tires to flatten. Video shows officers telling the man that there were deflation devices on his tires and instructing him to step out of the car.

In response, the suspect attempted to escape, driving onto a grassy area and colliding with several occupied tents. Two individuals inside the tents were injured, while others managed to jump out of the way to avoid harm, according to the report.

Despite the flattened tires, the suspect continued to flee until the vehicle became inoperable. Video shows the man stopping beside a freeway ramp and climbing over a fence that appeared to have barbed wire strung across the top.

The man then attempted to hide in a dumpster, covering himself with drywall. A K-9 unit successfully tracked and apprehended him, according to the release.

This video, guided by insights from risk management expert Gordon Graham, offers a detailed examination of best practices and safety considerations that can protect both officers and the public during high-risk vehicle pursuits.

“Can I get a cigarette or something?” the suspect asked officers before he climbed out of the dumpster.

During the investigation, officers recovered a firearm along the route taken by the stolen vehicle. It was determined that the suspect is legally prohibited from possessing a firearm, according to the release. The vehicle was towed, and various items related to the incident were collected as evidence.

The suspect was booked into King County Jail on charges of vehicular assault, unlawful possession of a firearm, and possession of a stolen vehicle.