Police apprehend fugitive
Law enforcement officers on Wednesday morning apprehended a 27-year-old man suspected of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old in Eudora.
Officers from the Eudora Police Department, Douglas and Leavenworth County sheriff's deputies and the Kansas Highway Patrol had been searching for the man since Monday night.
He was taken into custody at about 8 a.m. while hiding behind some mattresses in a barn just north of Eudora.
Late Monday afternoon, a Eudora child reported a sex crime. About 5:30 p.m., a Eudora officer flashed his cruiser lights to warn a driver to slow down, but the driver — who police say was the suspect — sped up.
The officer pursued the vehicle as it went north out of Eudora, crossed railroad tracks on Leavenworth County Road 1 and narrowly missed being hit by an oncoming train.
Eudora Police Chief Greg Dahlem said officers saw the driver lose control of his vehicle just before the train obscured their view. The driver abandoned the vehicle and fled on foot. Upon finding the vehicle, officers were able to determine the vehicle was registered to the man suspected of the sexual assault.
“Until he crashed, we didn't know this was our suspect. After that, we put two and two together,” Dahlem said.
Police also are investigating claims that the suspect may be connected to two more sexual assault victims.
The suspect has been convicted in the past of several crimes — mostly burglary — and he was on parole at them time of Monday’s alleged incident. He had been in and out of correctional facilities from 2002 to 2007.