Not first time former college football player leads police on chase

by: Richard Thompson Updated:


THURSTON COUNTY, Wash. - Josh Martin is a former UCLA football player, who also received a large inheritance. In the past few years instead of running from opposing players on the field he's been running from the law.

Friday Martin appeared in Thurston Superior Court, accused of leading Thurston County deputies on a high-speed chase. It started when a deputy spotted Martin, who was wanted on a felony warrant in Lewis County. Martin sped away from a deputy near the town of Rainier. Officers pursued Martin, who then failed to negotiate a turn. Sgt. Cameron Simper with the Thurston County Sheriff's Office told KIRO 7, "He lost control, crashed into a fence and fled from the vehicle on foot."

After crashing his Mercedes, Martin ran from vehicle and sprinted into a nearby garage. He hid in the attic but then fell through the ceiling and crashed to the ground 12 feet below, according to the homeowner.

"He put all his weight on that sheet rock, and it won't hold you and down he came," homeowner Bute Fennell.

Deputies heard the crash, but when they opened to the door Martin sprinted past them. A police K-9 gave chase and bit Martin in the rear. He fought with the dog and got away, but the dog gave chase and latched on to Martin's shoulder. Deputies Tazered Martin two times as he continued to fight, but were finally able to get him into custody.

This wasn't Martin's first run from the law.

Last year Martin crashed his Lexus after prosecutors say he threatened a man by waiving a gun and then leading police on a high speed chase in Lewis County. After that arrest Martin did a jailhouse interview with KIRO 7's South Sound Bureau Chief Richard Thompson. Martin told Thompson his problems stemmed from a football injury that led to addiction to pain killers, and eventually heroin and methamphetamine. Martin said, "I fully blame myself. I can't blame anybody else really. Just stupid stuff, you know? Just lost everything I had - it's kind of a helpless feeling."

After the interview, Martin skipped out on bail in the Lewis county case has been on the run until Thursday night, when Thurston deputies spotted him and he ended up crashing through Kaye Fennell's garage. He was arrested outside of her front door. 

Fennell could only shake her head after hearing Martin had once been a star athlete who had also received a large inheritance. Fennell said, "Very sad very sad I just hate to see these people throw their lives away on drugs and to have that kind of money and waste it like that. It is pathetic."