A reported drunken driver who failed to pull over for a Tualatin police officer Sunday night had to be cut out of his vehicle.
Clemente L. Solis, 42, of Portland was cited for reckless driving, eluding police, DUII, driving while suspended, first-degree criminal mischief, disobeying traffic control devices, failure to wear a seatbelt and failure to maintain a safe distance from an emergency vehicle. According to police, Solis's blood alcohol level was above the legal .08 limit.
The chase began Sunday night around 11:50 p.m. when a Tualatin police officer was concluding a traffic stop on northbound Interstate 5 near the Carman Road exit by Lake Oswego. The patrol car lights were activated.
The officer reported seeing a vehicle approach him on the highway, but the vehicle did not move to another lane as required (even though no other vehicles were interfering).
According to police, the vehicle passed the officer and the patrol car within two feet without changing lanes or slowing down.
The officer then followed the vehicle, a blue Ford Expedition, and attempted to stop it using his emergency lights and siren. But according to reports, the vehicle continued on I-5 and sped up reaching speeds between 75 mph and 95 mph.
According to the officer, the vehicle then exited at Taylor's Ferry Road where the driver sped through a stop sign. The driver eventually lost control, struck a guardrail near Southwest 20th Place and drove off the road into a wooded area, according to police.
The car traveled down a steep embankment and landed on its roof. The driver, Solis, was pinned under the vehicle.
According to police, officers and private residents attempted to lift the vehicle but were unable to until emergency medical services arrived. Solis was extricated from the wreck and transported to Oregon Health and Sciences Hospital with unknown injuries.
No officers or others were reported injured during the chase.