A return visit to Philomath after wrapping up business at the hospital in Corvallis turned into a high-speed pursuit for Ofc. Noah Lochner Wednesday night.

Sgt. Dave Gurski of the Philomath Police Department said Lochner passed a Subaru Legacy headed north on 53rd Street with a headlight out at around 10:50 p.m. After turning around to make the stop, Gurski said the vehicle took off in the area of 53rd and Harrison Boulevard.

Gurski said the driver, later identified as 20-year-old Tristian Lee DeWolfe, of Philomath, headed east on Harrison, turned north on Kings Boulevard and then east on Walnut Boulevard in Corvallis.

The driver then attempted to turn north from Walnut onto Ninth Street.

"The officer estimated speeds of up to 80 mph when negotiating that corner," Gurski said. "He ended up losing control of the vehicle, went through a parking lot there on the northeast corner of Walnut and northwest Ninth. It continued out of control through a parking lot and went through a fence."

The vehicle crashed into a veterinarian's pickup at Town & Country Animal Clinic.

"The vehicle collided with that and shoved that vehicle into the wall of the business, causing some pretty substantial damage," Gurski said.

DeWolfe, whose 19-year-old brother was in the car but was boxed in, took off on foot and was apprehended by Corvallis Police in the U.S. Bank parking lot, located across the veterinary clinic on NW Ninth Street, Gurski said.

"He indicated to Ofc. Lochner that he did have drugs in the vehicle, 8 ounces of heroin in a backpack," Gurski said.

Clinic owner Ann Weston said her truck is totaled and the building has major structural damage.

DeWolfe, who had several warrants for failure to appear in court, was arrested on charges of fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, stolen vehicle and failure to perform duties of a driver to injured persons, all Class C felonies, along with driving under the influence of intoxicants, recklessly endangering another person, fourth-degree assault, resisting arrest and three counts of second-degree criminal mischief.

Police transported DeWolfe to Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center with minor injuries before he was booked into Benton County Jail. His younger brother is not facing charges.

The registered owner of the vehicle signed a complaint that it was stolen after the pursuit and crash occurred, Gurski said.

The Benton County Sheriff's Office along with the Corvallis and Philomath police have all contributed to the investigation.

Lillian Schrock of the Corvallis Gazette-Times contributed to this story.


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