DPS catches up to wanted fugitive after pursuit

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ARIZONA - The following is a press release from the Arizona Department of Public Safety:

On August 3, 2008, at approximately 10:40 p.m., an Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZ DPS) Officer with the assistance of the Mesquite Nevada Police Department and the Utah Highway Patrol arrested 37-year-old John Eric Ewing on I-15 southbound in northwestern Arizona (at milepost 16) north of Las Vegas, Nevada.The arrest occurred following a pursuit which ended with Ewing swerving into the mountain side being seriously injured.The Mesquite Nevada Police spotted the vehicle known to be driven by Ewing and followed him out of Mesquite onto I-15.Mesquite Police had been tipped off by Las Vegas Metro Police that Ewing may be in their area and police had been actively looking for him.The Mesquite Nevada Police contacted the AZ DPS to assist in stopping Ewing who was presumed to be armed and dangerous.Ewing drove north onto I-15 entering Arizona while a Mesquite officer followed behind.

An AZ DPS officer intercepted the vehicle at milepost 12 (entering the Virgin River Gorge) and followed the Ewing's vehicle to exit 18 or Cedar Pocket where Ewing exited and turned to go southbound.Ewing failed to stop and Officers initiated pursuit of the vehicle. Less than two miles into the pursuit Ewing swerved off of the roadway to the right striking a mountain side.Ewing's vehicle traveled up the mountain side before bursting into flames in mid-air.Ewing was found unconscious in the vehicle with a loaded semi-automatic handgun in his hand.Ewing regained consciousness and was able to crawl out the passenger window without the weapon.Officers put out the remaining fire and took Ewing into custody.Ewing is currently in critical condition at University Medical Center, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Ewing was wanted for sex assault, burglary with a deadly weapon, two counts of first degree kidnapping with a deadly weapon, two counts of battery with intent to commit sexual assault, two counts of battery with a deadly weapon, three counts of sexual assault with a deadly weapon, attempted sexual assault with a deadly weapon, and two counts of robbery with a deadly weapon out of Las Vegas, Nevada.Ewing was also wanted for obscenity and child pornography charges out of U.S. District Court of Eastern Virginia.