MISSOULA — Montana Highway Patrol Captain Jim Kitchen is relieved no one was hurt when troopers and other officers were chasing a man accused of the double murder in Ravalli County.
Logan Dallas Christopher, 25 -- who was arrested after he crashed in Missoula Tuesday night -- is accused of killing two women in an apparent domestic dispute outside Stevensville.
Kitchen said with speeds reaching as high as 130 mph in rush hour traffic, there was tremendous risk of someone being killed.
"Nobody was injured. No law enforcement injuries. Nobody else was injured thank God. It's one of the things we don't like to see. Somebody takes someone else's life and then they take off. We have to stop those people," Capt. Kitchen said.
He told MTN News the pursuing trooper had begun following Christopher's car north of Florence after receiving reports from Ravalli County deputies, only to have the suspect "take off" in Lolo. As the following trooper activated his lights and sirens on the Lolo Flats, Kitchen prepared to deploy a spike strip, only to have the chase pass by sooner than expected at extremely high speeds.
Missoula County deputies and Missoula Police joined troopers in the pursuit, eventually arresting Christopher after he crashed on the south side of the city.
"The coordinating efforts that we see between the county, Missoula County, Missoula City Police Department, DNRC, Ravalli County, everybody. We all play a part in doing the same job, even though we wear different colored uniforms," Capt. Kitchen said. "So that's basically how that thing started. We just had one of our troopers get behind that guy just south of Lolo and he did a very good job," said Captain Kitchen.
Kitchen said officers are trained to approach all pursuits with extreme caution, especially not knowing what's going through the mind of a wanted suspect.