A man suspected of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old family member in Eudora led four law enforcement agencies on a cross-county chase Monday evening. Darkness halted the manhunt.
Eudora Police Chief Greg Dahlem said that around 5:30 p.m. a juvenile reported a sex crime had occurred earlier in the day. As an officer investigated that claim, another officer attempted to pull over a car going northbound on Church Street.
Dahlem said a white male, approximately 30 years old, failed to pull over after Eudora police ordered him to. The man led police northbound out of Eudora, crossing into Leavenworth County.
As he crossed the train tracks on County Road 1 in Leavenworth County, he narrowly missed being struck by a train. Police could not cross the tracks until the train had passed, but then discovered that the man had crashed his car after he crossed the tracks. He abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot. Police were able to determine that the vehicle belonged to a family member of the suspect.
Dahlem said Eudora police enlisted the help of Douglas and Leavenworth County sheriff's deputies, a helicopter from the Kansas Highway Patrol and the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks, but could not find the man.
Police ended the search about 9:15 p.m. Dahlem said darkness and the wooded terrain made conducting the search difficult.
"We think he's hiding out. He may be injured," Dahlem said. He said police are investigating claims that the suspect may be connected to more sexual assault victims.