PRESS RELEASE: Vehicle pursuit

Farmington, NM – At approximately 2:52 p.m. today a Farmington police officer observed two Ford Mustangs (one grey, one white) racing on East Main Street. They were heading west bound on Main near Clayton reaching speeds in excess of 75 miles per hour in a 35 mile zone. The officer activated his lights and both vehicles pulled into the parking lot of the gas station on Browning Parkway and Main.  The driver of the white Mustang then evaded the officer, driving to the back of the gas station and proceeding onto Main Street. He continued west on Main at which time the officer terminated pursuit for citizen safety. The driver was then seen driving on Main Street heading westbound in the eastbound lane. At one point, he was driving on the sidewalk. This occurred from Smith Lane to Sullivan. He continued this path then turned south on Sullivan where he stopped to let out a passenger. The officer re-initiated pursuit and followed the suspect to San Juan Boulevard, traveled west to Butler, and then south on Pinon past San Juan Regional Medical Center. The suspect continued to travel to the Bisti Highway near Murray Drive when officers successfully deployed Stop Sticks. The vehicle continued to travel onto 371 and N36 on a flat tire and hit an FPD unit. At this time the vehicle lost its rear tire and was traveling at minimal speeds. The suspect attempted to turn into a driveway when he lost control of the vehicle and then backed into a pole. Officers were able to pin the vehicle in at this point. The suspect exited the vehicle and ran approximately 200 yards before brandishing a knife at an officer. Officers deployed their Tasers and the suspect finally gave up his knife. Officers took 29-year-old Shawn Thomas into custody. Initially, he concealed his identity to officers. Thomas will be charged with DUI, aggravated fleeing, two counts of aggravated assault on a peace officer, racing, reckless driving, open container, concealing identity, and paraphernalia. He has multiple unrelated felony warrants for his arrest.

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