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UPDATED: Man flees up a tree in Fircrest

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on Sep. 30, 2011 at 6:06 am |
September 30, 2011 2:37 pm

UPDATED at 2:35 p.m.

A young man who spent nine hours in a tree overnight trying to escape a Washington State Patrol trooper was taken for a mental health evaluation Friday.

The man, believed to be in his early 20s, could eventually face charges of felony eluding, obstruction of justice, criminal trespass and making false statements to a public servant for the ordeal, the State Patrol reported.

A trooper had tried to stop a car for speeding on state Route 16 just before 11 p.m. Thursday, trooper Guy Gill said Friday. Initially, the car stopped. Once the trooper got out of his car, however, the car took off again.

Gill said the trooper pursued the car at low speeds into Fircrest. The man jumped out of the car as it was moving and ran.

A police dog found the man a short time later. He had climbed 35 to 40 feet up a cedar tree in a yard on Del Monte Avenue near South 19th Street.

Troopers spent the next nine hours trying to persuade the man to climb down. A negotiator was finally able to get the man to come down shortly before 8 a.m.

The man, who was dressed only in a short-sleeved T-shirt and jeans, was placed into an ambulance and taken from the scene. He was not injured, Gill said.

The man, who was not being forthcoming with troopers about his name, later was transported to Western State Hospital.

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