Shooting suspect arrested after pursuit/collision in Northeast Spokane

N. Briggs #1177

Thursday, November 28, 2019 at 1:52 a.m.

Shooting suspect arrested after pursuit/collision in Northeast Spokane


On 11-27-19 a little after 11PM, an SPD patrol sergeant spotted Mr. River Hewson (29-years-old), driving a vehicle in Spokane’s Hillyard neighborhood. Hewson was being sought for a shooting which occurred on 11-25-19,  and was believed to still be armed. Additionally Mr. Hewson had two unrelated felony warrants; one issued from the Department of Corrections for escape from community custody, the other for theft of a motor vehicle.


SPD officers attempted to contact Mr. Hewson, instead of complying he immediately fled in the vehicle at a high-rate of speed. Due to the violent nature of the criminal acts Hewson was being sought for, officers initiated a vehicle pursuit in an effort to take him into custody. Hewson made no attempt to surrender, instead fleeing a high-speeds through Northeast Spokane.


At the intersection of Addison St and Euclid Ave, Hewson lost control of the vehicle he was driving causing a collision. With his vehicle disabled Hewson was taken into custody without incident.


The collision caused significant damage to three parked vehicles, one SPD patrol vehicle, and two residential fences along with the vehicle Hewson was operating. No citizen or officer injuries were incurred.


Hewson will be booked for multiple charges stemming from the shooting incident; assault 1st degree, unlawful possession of a firearm 1st degree, and drive-by shooting. Additionally he will face multiple charges stemming from the chase to include eluding a police vehicle, and possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine was discovered at the time of his arrest). Other charges are possible.  He will also be booked for his two felony warrants. Hewson is a 9-time convicted felon with a criminal history that includes riot with a deadly weapon, assault, and robbery.  


The vehicle driven by  Hewson was seized, a search warrant will be sought to garner further evidence related to the shooting.


SPD officers constantly evaluate their tactics when arresting subjects in order to balance the need for immediate apprehension with the inherent risks to public safety associated with arrest methods such as vehicle pursuits. In this instance the serious and violent nature of the charges, coupled with the continued threat Hewson posed to public safety, indicated immediate apprehension was in the best interest of community safety.


Incident # 2019-20222608

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