On July 5, 2017, just before 11:30 PM, 43-year-old David Pendleton from Nevada was involved in a pursuit with multiple Law Enforcement vehicles that started on US Route 93 at Rancho Casitas Road and ended in the town of Wittmann, Arizona.
Background – While driving south on US 93 near US 89, a deputy conducted a license plate check on a green 1997 Honda sedan in front of him which returned to a stolen vehicle. The Honda turned off US 93 onto Rancho Casitas Road and sped away as the driver realized he was being followed by a deputy. After circling the area, the Honda returned to US 93 at Rancho Casitas Road, ran a stop sign and headed south with the deputy in pursuit. The Honda continued to flee, reaching speeds of 100 mph as it passed Vulture Mine Road while going around 4 cars and a semi-truck and trailer in a no passing zone. A vehicle travelling north was run off the road into the shoulder.
The Honda maintained speeds of 100 mph as it transitioned onto US 60 still heading south. At this time during the chase, an object was thrown from the Honda which struck the lead pursuing Sheriff’s vehicle with a loud ‘bang.’ Fortunately, it missed the windshield. Additional objects were thrown from the Honda that did strike the deputy’s windshield causing minor damage. The suspect continued forcing innocent motorists off the roadway while crossing into oncoming traffic.
As the pursuit continued south, Maricopa County Office Sheriff’s (MCSO) deputies were asked to assist and deploy stop sticks in the path of the Honda. Around milepost 128 on US 60, the Honda slowed from 110 mph to about 90 mph, struck the stop sticks and began slowing. Now in Whittman, the Honda turned west off US 60 onto a side road then made several turns on side streets, running stop signs and cutting through private driveways. The Honda ended up on Crozier Road by the Wells Country Store before driving down a dead end road where it came to a sliding stop as it collided with a barbed wire fence. The driver exited the Honda and ran north out of sight. The deputy remained with the stolen vehicle pending the arrival of assisting officers. No other occupants were inside.
A check of the vehicle revealed a strong odor of marijuana. Deputies located about 8 grams of marijuana inside along with some marijuana ‘wax,’ a black BB handgun modified to look like a real firearm, and identification for David Pendleton. Deputies confirmed the photo on the ID matched that of the suspect who fled.
Deputies set a containment of the area and with the aid of MCSO deputies, an MCSO search dog and air support from a DPS Ranger helicopter crew, a search was conducted. Pendleton could not be located.
Pendleton is being sought for charges including Theft means of transportation, Possession of stolen property, Felony Flight, Reckless driving, Criminal speed, Endangerment, Criminal damage, Possession of marijuana, Possession of drug paraphernalia and Misconduct involving weapons.
Anyone with information on Pendleton’s whereabouts is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 928-771-3260 or Yavapai Silent Witness at 1800-932-3232. Callers to Silent Witness are eligible for a cash reward if the tip leads to Pendleton’s arrest.
Citizens can contact the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office with information or questions at 928-771-3260 or the YCSO website: www.ycsoaz.gov