Thatcher PD

THATCHER — A Texas man demonstrated here why a person shouldn’t imitate the TV show “COPS” when he crashed his motorcycle trying to run from the police.

Christopher Daniel Reyes, 32, of El Paso, Texas, was arrested and booked into the Graham County Jail for unlawful flight from pursuing law enforcement after he failed to evade capture Sept. 7.

Possible DUI charges are pending results of an examination of Reyes’ blood.

According to a Thatcher Police report, Reyes made an illegal left turn out of the 20th Avenue exit of the Gila Valley Plaza at about 8 p.m. An officer noticed the traffic infraction and attempted to pull Reyes over.

The suspect steered his recently acquired Harley Davidson motorcycle into the Walgreens parking lot at the intersection of U.S. Highway 70 and 20th Avenue. When the officer approached the bike on foot, however, Reyes took off southbound on 20th Avenue.

The officer began pursuit and saw Reyes narrowly avoid crashing into another vehicle turning onto Relation Street. Reyes continued southbound through the dirt parking lot of the Mt. Graham Safe House and northbound on a dirt farm road. As the officer turned onto the farm road, he witnessed Reyes wreck his bike and get flipped off.

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Reyes then continued to flee on foot but was eventually caught by the officer after he failed to clear a residential wall. At that time, the officer noticed Reyes had an odor of alcohol on his breath.

Paramedics from Southwest Ambulance arrived and transported Reyes to the Mt. Graham Regional Medical Center for treatment of minor injuries. While at the hospital, a nurse took Reyes' blood for police testing purposes.

During questioning at the hospital, Reyes allegedly told the officer he had just purchased the motorcycle he was riding and decided to take it down to Safford from Morenci. While in Safford, he had a couple of drinks at a local bar before heading to another pub for more drinks with an acquaintance.

Reyes said he assumed the officer was going to arrest him for a DUI when he was stopped, and he remembered watching a motorcyclist escape officers from the TV show “COPS” and decided to see if he could get away, too.

After being medically cleared, Reyes was booked into the jail.

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