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New information from Oregon State Police details Thursday night chase
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New information from Oregon State Police details Thursday night chase

  • Updated

The Oregon State Police released more information about the chase ending in arrest Thursday night.

Police say Kenneth Burnett, 47, of Klamath Falls was the driver of the gray Toyota 4Runner sport-utility vehicle that attempted to elude police on Interstate 5.

Burnett was booked on charges of kidnapping, reckless driving, recklessly endangering another person, failure to perform the duties of a driver when property is damaged and fleeing or attempting to elude police officer.

State police list Earl Walker, 70, of Mountain View, Montana, as the kidnapping victim.

The incident began when state troopers were dispatched from Springfield after the 4Runner was reported to be passing other vehicles on the shoulder at a high rate of speed on Interstate 5. Troopers say they located the vehicle at the Oak Grove rest area, about 30 miles south of Albany.

Troopers say the chase started when occupants of the vehicle did not comply with orders from the trooper and the driver took off and jumped the curb to Interstate 5. The chase was discontinued due to weather conditions.

The vehicle was intercepted heading north on Interstate 5 south of Albany and a spike strip was deployed. The vehicle stopped temporarily, letting out the passenger, before taking off again and getting stuck in the mud less than a mile further on, according to state police.

Troopers say the driver threw a gun out of the open sunroof of the vehicle before SWAT and Mobile Response Team troopers fired less lethal rounds at the driver and apprehended him.

Police closed a section of Interstate 5 and surrounding streets near Seven Mile Lane south of Albany, where they had surrounded the 4Runner. The northbound lanes of I-5 were reopened shortly after 5 p.m.

K. Rambo can be contacted at 541-812-6091 or Follow on Twitter via @k_rambo_.


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