Police pursuit ends in crash near Crossroads Arts District; one person in custody

An SUV crashed near the Crossroads Arts District in Kansas City following a police chase that started in Kansas City, moved into Kansas and returned to Kansas City Friday afternoon.

A suspect was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries following the crash on Washington Street near West Pennway Street.

Erik Smith, assistant special agent in charge at the Kansas City office for the Drug Enforcement Administration, said the incident began earlier Friday afternoon while agents were conducting a drug investigation in Kansas City.

According to Smith, a supervisor on scene made the decision to try to stop and identify one of the suspects. The suspect then fled from a Kansas City police officer, he said.

Kansas City police terminated the chase, but Smith said DEA agents continued to follow the suspect across the state line by utilizing an aerial surveillance unit. The vehicle police were tracking was described as a white Mazda SUV.

The Kansas Highway Patrol initiated a traffic stop near Merriam Lane and Lamar Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas. Smith said the vehicle initially stopped for the trooper, but when additional DEA agents showed up, the suspect allegedly fled again, “crashing through several of those unmarked police cars and nearly striking a DEA agent.”

At least one shot was fired by a DEA agent while the SUV was striking the agents’ vehicles, Smith said.

It is unclear if the suspect was hit by the gunfire, Smith said.

The suspect continued across the state line and ultimately crashed on Washington Street in Kansas City, striking a parked car.

The driver, described as an adult male, was taken into custody.

The DEA, Kansas City police and the Kansas Highway Patrol were at the scene of the crash.

Smith said authorities found firearms and “a significant quantity of drugs and other contraband” in the SUV.

The suspect was taken to a hospital and is expected to be charged in federal court.

No officers were injured in Friday’s incident.

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Kaitlyn Schwers covers breaking news and crime at night for The Kansas City Star. Originally from Willard, Mo., she spent nearly three years reporting in Arkansas and Illinois before returning to Missouri and joining The Star in 2017.
Katie Bernard covers Kansas crime, cops and courts for the Kansas City Star. She joined the Star in May of 2019. Katie studied journalism and political science at the University of Kansas.