A suspect in a stolen car abandoned the vehicle and jumped off the Nisqually Bridge and into the river, causing long backups on I-5 Friday morning.
It’s not yet known where the pursuit began, but the stolen vehicle was heading southbound on I-5. The driver was being followed by a special operations team from the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department.
When the driver crashed and the car caught fire on the Nisqually River Bridge, the suspect got out, climbed up the bridge and jumped into the Nisqually River.
Two of the three lanes of southbound I-5 were blocked by the abandoned vehicle and police response. Traffic backed up into Lakewood while only one lane was open.
Air and water units were dispatched as well as a Thurston County K-9 unit. The stolen car was towed from the scene and all lanes were back open by about 10:30 a.m.
Police searched the nearby Nisqually Wildlife Refuge.
Police said the suspect was in custody around 3:30 p.m. and will be booked for Possession of Stolen Vehicle and Eluding.
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