Sheriff: Man, woman with felony warrants hide in drain pipe after fleeing traffic stop

An armed man and woman fled a traffic stop late Tuesday morning and went across the Stillwater River before they were caught hiding in a drainage pipe during subfreezing weather conditions.

Montgomery County Sheriff Rob Streck said the pair fled a traffic stop at 11 a.m. at East Siebenthaler Avenue at Deweese Parkway. Both had felony warrants for their arrest, and the man had a gun and made statements that they were not going back to prison, the sheriff said.

The East Siebenthaler Avenue bridge was shut down for about three hours after the pair went into the water.

“The individuals went into the river, across the river,” Streck said. “They actually went down for a few seconds, they started to call for a water rescue. They came back up and they were able to get across to (the west) side of the river.”

A SWAT team was called, and deputies along with Dayton police officers searched the area surrounding the river for the suspects. The Dayton Fire Department used thermal imaging cameras in the search.

The pair did not come back up to the roadway, but instead hid in a storm drainage pipe.

The Dayton Water Department used robots that normally look for clogs to search pipes in the neighborhood.

“We were able to find them after about an hour,” Streck said.

The woman was the first to emerge from the pipe that runs underneath Kathleen Avenue, near Sandhurst Drive, more than a block from the river. The man came out about 45 minutes later. They were arrested and deputies recovered the gun, the sheriff said.

Both were taken to Miami Valley Hospital to be checked after they were outside and wet while the temperature hovered around 30 degrees.

“They have been water-logged for quite a long time,” Streck said.

The man and woman, who were not identified, were to be booked into the Montgomery County Jail on the warrants. Streck said he did not know what the warrants were for but said they likely were for serious charges because the pair referenced not going back to prison. The man and woman also will face local charges, he said.

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