High-speed chase in Clallam, Jefferson counties ends in arrest of Carlsborg man

By Joe Smillie
Peninsula Daily News

SEQUIM –– After leading sheriff's deputies on a high-speed chase that stretched more than 19.8 miles across Clallam and Jefferson counties and reached speeds in excess of 80 miles per hour this morning, Drew T. Balch of Carlsborg is in Clallam County jail.

Clallam County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Lyman Moores said the 20-minute chase involved officers from the Clallam and Jefferson county sheriff's office, the Sequim Police Department, Jamestown S'Klallam Tribal police and the Washington State Patrol.

Balch, 21, had four outstanding warrants for his arrest, and will likely appear Thursday morning in Clallam County Superior Court on charges of eluding police and hit-and-run for striking an unattended vehicle during the chase.

The outstanding warrants included three felony warrants for failure to obey court orders and one misdemeanor warrant for third-degree theft.

The chase began shortly after 8:15 a.m., Moores said, and gave the following account:

A Clallam County Sheriff's Office deputy was parked in a patrol car at the intersection of Towne and Woodcock roads on a suspicious vehicle report.

After seeing the deputy, Balch turned his 1988 Chevrolet S-10 pickup north on Meyer Andrew Lane.

When the deputy followed, Balch drove his pickup through a field, emerging on Aldrich Lane before turning east on Woodcock Road and speeding east toward Washington Harbor.

Sequim police laid a spike strip on Washington Harbor Road in an attempt to stop Balch, but he drove around it and continued east toward U.S. Highway 101.

The chase then continued on the highway, reaching speeds of more than 80 miles an hour, before Balch hit a spike strip that had been laid at mile post 277 by Washington State Patrol troopers.

The spikes flattened all four tires on Balch's car.

He drove on the flat tires for a short while before crossing the westbound lane in front of a log truck, ditching the truck on the shoulder of the road and fleeing into the woods north of the highway.

Deputy Andrew Wagner had driven off the highway onto Old Gardiner Road and caught Balch on foot, Moores said.

Deputies attempted to arrest Balch on the outstanding warrants at his home in the 900 block of Heath Road in Carlsborg on Feb. 12, but he was not there.

The warrant sweep at his home did result in the arrest of Todd Michael Perszyk, 50, of Port Angeles, and Holli Ann Bell, 34, of Sequim.

Perszyk, arrested on charges of obstructing a law enforcement officer, possession of heroin with intent to deliver and second-degree possession of stolen property, was scheduled for a status hearing in superior court this afternoon. He was not on the Clallam County jail roster Wednesday.

Bell was arrested on an outstanding Department of Corrections warrant. She remained in jail as of Wednesday.

________

Sequim-Dungeness Valley Editor Joe Smillie can be reached at 360-681-2390, ext. 5052, or at jsmillie@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: March 05. 2014 6:57PM
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