WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Wichita Police Department released more details Thursday about the high-speed chase across Wichita Wednesday that led to the shooting of a man and his arrest.
Lt. Todd Ojile said in a media briefing at City Hall the incident began shortly before 10 a.m. when officers were dispatched to a call of a person stealing mail from mailboxes in the 1500 block of N. Caddy. Dispatchers determined the vehicle had been reported stolen about four hours earlier from a QuikTrip in east Wichita.
Ojile said a 43-year-old citizen was following the vehicle and provided dispatchers with details about the vehicle, including its tag number. As the citizen followed the vehicle, it traveled west on 13th St. North onto I-235 and later exited onto Central where a man and woman in the vehicle went into a business near I-235 and Central.
After officers entered the business, Ojile said the male suspect allegedly fired shots at the officers as they took cover. The suspect also fired on officers outside the business, and other officers who were arriving on the scene.
Ojile said the man then allegedly stole the truck of the citizen who had been following him and fled the scene. Police said he also fired additional shots at officers as the chase continued west across Wichita. During that pursuit, officers reported the man swerved toward an officer who was attempting to deploy spiked stop-strips to deflate the truck’s tires.
The pursuit ended at a business at W. Central and S. Maize Rd. where the man was taken into custody. He was transported from the scene by ambulance after reportedly suffering a gunshot wound to his jaw.
The suspect in Wednesday’s high-speed chase was later identified as 21-year old Elijah Martinez. Martinez was previously wanted on burglary charges in November.
In 2015, Martinez was convicted of two counts of burglary.
Just last month, Wichita Police posted on their Facebook page that they were looking for Martinez.
They said he was wanted for aggravated burglary, theft and interference with a law enforcement officer.
Wichita police say after today’s shooting, Martinez could face charges of aggravated assault or attempted murder.
Once Martinez is released from the hospital, he will be arrested and booked into jail and charges will then be filed.