Lincoln City police chase minivan

Shannon Kay Cowart

On Friday, July 17, shortly before 10 p.m., a Lincoln City police officer responded to a report of a suspicious minivan parked behind an unoccupied residence. As the officer was making contact, a female occupant in the minivan drove away at a high rate of speed after being told to stop.

A few minutes later, the officer located the minivan pulling into the drive-thru of Dutch Bros Coffee, still driving at a high rate of speed. The driver continued through the drive-thru and turned north on Highway 101. After seeing multiple traffic violations, the officer attempted to initiate a traffic stop, but the driver failed to pull over, and other police officers joined in the pursuit.

The driver continued north, driving within her lane of travel at an appropriate speed, but still refusing to pull over. She momentarily pulled over on Highway 101 near North 26th Street, but then quickly sped off again. 

A police officer was able to get ahead of the minivan and deploy “Stop-Sticks” at the Highway 101 and Logan Road. This deflated both passenger-side tires on the minivan.

The driver then turned onto North Logan Road and accelerated to more than 70 miles per hour, narrowly missing a motorcyclist. The passenger-side tires began coming apart, and the driver pulled over onto the shoulder of Logan Road near Northeast Port Lane.

The driver refused to exit the vehicle and climbed into the back of the minivan, where all the windows were covered with blankets. Officers approached the minivan and smashed a side window. The female still refused to comply and started yelling at the officers, who then deployed pepper spray, after which she was taken into custody without further incident. Officers administered first aid until medical personnel arrived.

The driver was identified as Shannon Kay Cowart, 49, of Lincoln City. She was arrested on charges of felony eluding police by vehicle, reckless driving, reckless endangering, interfering with police and providing false information to police.

Cowart was transported to the Lincoln City Police Department and held there while officers completed criminal citations on the above listed charges. Due to the Lincoln County Jail’s COVID-19 precautions, Cowart was issued the citations and released.

The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, North Lincoln Fire & Rescue and Pacific West Ambulance assisted with this incident.

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