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Published on June 13, 2024
Ex-Cop Suspected of Double Homicide Dies in Fiery I-5 Standoff After Kidnapping Amber Alert Sparked Massive Oregon ManhuntSource: West Richland Police Department / Elias Huizar

Dramatic footage from a police chase and standoff on Interstate 5, involving a former Yakima police officer accused of double homicide and kidnapping, has been made public by Oregon State Police. The chase, which escalated to gunfire, ended with the suspect taking his own life after an Amber Alert was issued for his 1-year-old son earlier this year. According to a report by KPTV, the pursuit occurred on April 23 when troopers spotted Elias Huizar’s vehicle near Eugene and attempted to stop him.

When Huizar failed to yield, officers tried a "redirect," aiming to halt the car. Fleeing the attempted stop, Huizar eventually halted and discharged his firearm at the pursuing troopers, as shown in the released dashcam video. Fortunately, no troopers were injured during the encounter. The chase continued until Huizar's vehicle crashed near milepost 197 on the shoulder, as noted by KPTV. Upon the car's approach, authorities found Huizar deceased with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

In the aftermath, the minor child at the center of the Amber Alert was recovered unharmed. Details from additional footage and a comprehensive review by the Linn County district attorney indicate that the law enforcement actions in the case were deemed justifiable. Linn County District Attorney Doug Marteeny concluded after an investigation that the use of force was legally justified, said KGW, including those by Oregon State Police Superintendent Casey Codding.

Moreover, a portion of the incident was brought to public attention thanks to a convenience store clerk. After spotting Huizar and his son during the early hours of April 23, the clerk promptly reported to 911, triggering the authorities’ response, as per KVAL. The high-speed engagement unfolded several hours later when OSP troopers located Huizar's vehicle, and, despite their efforts to safely end the pursuit, Huizar initiated what would become a fatal sequence of events.

The situation culminated in a tactical vehicle maneuver by the troopers, executed to prevent any further escape and potential harm. As the body camera video reveals, officers communicated their strategy and decisively stopped Huizar's advancement. "He's gonna go ahead and take off from us. We're in this. ... We got a pursuit going southbound," an OSP officer is heard saying in the radio transmission. Continuing, the officer commands, "Turn around, turn around, pit him. Turn around and pit him!"—the tactic which eventually led to Huizar’s vehicle spinning out and his subsequent death, detailed by KVAL.