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Officers use stun gun on suspect following chase

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WEST VALLEY CITY — Police recovered a stolen vehicle in West Valley City and took the suspect to jail after using a stun gun on him.

Police say they spotted the vehicle in a neighborhood near 2900 West and 3100 South. Before they could approach the driver, he drove away, leading police on a high-speed chase that reached speeds of around 80 miles per hour.

Sgt. Shane Matheson of the West Valley City Police Department said, "The suspect made several attempts to elude officers by driving over barriers and islands in the middle of 3100 South and Bangerter Highway."

Officers caught up with him at the Walmart at 5600 West in West Valley City. But he wouldn't get out of the vehicle.

"Any time someone is inside a vehicle, they have somewhat of an advantage over us," Matheson said. "We have no idea if there are any weapons or anything in the vehicle that can harm us. So, we want to get them out of the vehicle as safely as possible and under our control if possible."

Officers opened the passenger door because the driver's door was blocked by a patrol car. When the suspect, Christopher Smeding, still refused to come out, officers used a stun gun on him. He then got out of the car and was arrested.

Officers say they found a large amount of meth and heroine inside the vehicle. In addition to possession of narcotics, Smeding will face charges of fleeing, resisting arrest and having a stolen car.


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Stephany Beshara and Kristine Pratt


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