Boise Police Department
News Release

William L. Bones
Chief of Police

Contact: BPD Media Relations Office


Tuesday, July 07, 2009

07-07-09 Officers Search after Suspect Jumps in Canal

07-07-09 Officers Search after Suspect Jumps in Canal
    Boise, July 7, 2009, 9:14 p.m. - Boise Police will continue checking the area around a West Boise canal tonight, searching for a man who ran from an officer, jumped into a canal, and disappeared underground.

  At this point, if the man is still in the canal, officers don't believe he survived.

  "It's possible he got out, but if he didn't, we're making every effort we know how to, to search for him and find him," said Lt. Alan Cavener, Boise Police Watch Commander and Incident Commander for most of the search. "We had paramedics standing by if we found him and he needed help. Unfortunately he chose to put himself in a very dangerous situation. Too dangerous for officers or anyone else to go into the canal after him."

  This evening, officers used a camera from the Boise City Public Works Department to search the canal underground. Where the man went in, the canal immediately goes underground, not surfacing again for 1/4 mile. Officers lowered the video camera, that sends pictures to a video monitor, into the canal beneath five manhole covers. The water appeared fairly clear with a swift current, but officers saw no sign of the man.

  Canal company managers say water in the canal is 56-degrees.

  Officers considered asking the canal company to shut the water off to the canal, but canal managers say shutting down that section would flood others, possibly affecting hundreds, possibly thousands of water users.

  Canal managers have installed a grate several feet from where the canal surfaces again, near Mitchell and Fairview, to catch the man's body if indeed he drown.

  If anyone knows anything about who the man may be or his whereabouts, they're urged to call Crime Stoppers at 343-COPS.

  Additional Background:  The man ran from a Boise Police officer approx 2:20 p.m. this afternoon, after he'd been seen by a woman displaying a gun as he walked down Maple Grove. When the officer stopped to talk to the man, the man gave the officer his consent to search him. The officer had just begun the search, checking only one pocket and finding a small amount of marijuana and a knife, when the man ran. The officer had not yet gotten an ID from the man before he fled. AT this time, it's unclear why the man had the gun or why he ran from the officer.

Original Release:

Search for Pursuit Suspect
   Boise, July 7, 2009, 3:07 p.m. - Boise Police are watching a west Boise canal, looking for a man who ran from an officer and jumped into the canal.
   Suspect Description: white male, 5' 10", 5'11", approx 165 lbs, wearing a black tank top, shorts, in his 20's.
   What Happened: A motorist on Maple Grove called police dispatch at 2:18 p.m. this afternoon reporting she saw a man walking on Maple Grove south of Fairview carrying a gun. The citizen told dispatchers the man was taking various items out of his pockets when she saw him take out a gun, then put it back in his pocket.
   A short time later, a Boise Police Patrol Officer spotted the man and stopped to talk to him. The man gave the officer consent to search him. The officer had just began the search of the man's pockets, and had found a small amount of marijuana and a knife when the man ran from the officer. The man ran a short distance as the officer chased him on foot. The officer then saw the man jump into a canal that runs behind several car retailers on Maple Grove south of Fairview. The canal is open for only a short distance, then is covered, running under roads.
   The officer, recognizing the danger, did not jump in the canal, but instead called for back up, Boise Fire's Dive Rescue team,and paramedics. Currently, Boise Police are working with the canal company to see if it's possible to turn the water in the canal off to search for the suspect. Sending in search teams behind the suspect is considered too dangerous for the rescuers.
   Further updates will be released as available.