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Man faces charges for wild ride

Martin Gregory led police on a high-speed chase before flipping his car in a ditch off West Valley Highway.  - Courtesy photo/VRFA
Martin Gregory led police on a high-speed chase before flipping his car in a ditch off West Valley Highway.
— image credit: Courtesy photo/VRFA

The driver who flipped his car upside down in a pond, put two people in the hospital and closed the on- and off-ramps to West Valley Highway South to Peasley Canyon and Highway 18 West for hours on May 15 could face charges of DUI and reckless driving, according to the Washington State Patrol.

Trooper Chris Webb said Monday, however, that a decision about the fate of 27-year-old Martin D. Gregory is still weeks off.

Gregory was released from Harborview Medical Center in Seattle two weeks ago. At the time of the accident, the Department of Corrections had warrants out for his arrest.

According to Auburn Police, the car with two men and one woman inside had been traveling recklessly south in the 1300 block of West Valley Highway north when an Auburn officer saw it passing in a no-passing zone. Once the car passed the officer, the officer made a U-turn, and when the driver allegedly saw this, he sped up.

The officer at first tried to catch up, but quickly abandoned the pursuit out of safety concerns to the public, according to Auburn Police Commander Mike Hirman. The officer looked for the suspect vehicle, and after a few minutes found the car upside-down in a deep ditch.

Gregory's two passengers had already left the car on their own, but Gregory was still seat-belted in, unconscious and under water. The officer got Gregory out and performed CPR on him until medics could get there.

Firefighters treated the occupants at the scene, and transported the woman to MultiCare Auburn Medical Center. Her condition and name have not been released. VRFA water rescue technicians searched the vehicle and found no other occupants.

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