The driver of a sport utility vehicle reported stolen in Pittsburg was taken into custody Saturday in Lawrence after speeding away from a Douglas County Sheriff's deputy and then trying to hide in a wooded area.
The suspect, a juvenile male, was caught after a search in the woods near Mary's Lake in southeastern Lawrence, Sheriff's Lt. Kathy Tate said. She said the boy was not from the Douglas County area but declined to release any more information about him.
About 12:30 p.m. a Sheriff's officer southbound on U.S. Highway 59 near Pleasant Grove spotted a northbound, late model, white Mitsubishi Montero traveling at a high rate of speed, Tate said.
"The deputy turned around and pursued the vehicle as it continued northbound," Tate said.
A check of the vehicle's license plate revealed it had been reported stolen.
In the area of 34th and Iowa streets, the Montero drove over curbs and ended up eastbound on 31st Street, where it struck concrete barricades in the Home Depot construction area, Tate said.
The Montero finally came to a stop after leading officers to the Mary's Lake area. The driver fled on foot. Other deputies and Lawrence Police officers converged on the area and the suspect was found and taken into custody, Tate said.
The Montero was heavily damaged, she said. No law enforcement vehicles were damaged and no one was injured in the incident.
Pittsburg Police Sgt. Mark Lewandowski said the Montero was taken Saturday morning from a school parking lot after its owner momentarily left it unattended.
In Douglas County, the suspect was being held for reckless driving, fleeing and eluding police, possession of stolen property, and not having a valid driver's license. He was turned over to officials with Douglas County Juvenile Intake Assessment Center, Tate said.