Man pilots boat for police in high-speed chase

Posted at 1:17 PM, May 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-23 13:17:26-04

SEATTLE (KIRO/CNN) - The last thing new Zodiac boat owner Kurt Bray expected when he and his family stopped for gas and ice cream at the Des Moines Marina was to lead a white-knuckle police boat chase.

The ordeal started when Des Moines police ordered the owner of an old yacht to give himself up after a woman on board was heard screaming for help.

"The guy was cutting his lines and pulling away from the dock and there was nothing the police could do really," Bray said.

People began snapping photos as the yacht sped away.

"One of the cops turned around and said to me hey, you, come over here," Bray said.

While Kurt's family was busy getting ice cream, Kurt's boat was commandeered by the officer.

"He just hopping in and said follow that boat!" Bray said. "And I said 'Yes, sir!' I gunned it out of the harbor."

As they raced toward the yacht, Kurt noticed the officer had no lifejacket.

"So i handed him one of these, and said 'Hey, let's at least look the part out there, right'"

The speeding yacht would not stop.

"As soon as it saw us, it starting doing this, like s-curves and stop, slow down, and then speed up," Bray said. "And the officer, he was cool and calm."

It took 20 minutes for police in a second boat to catch up and finally end the chase.

"They gunned it after them and that was when my tour of duty was over," Bray said.

The damaged yacht returned to the marina and the woman onboard was okay.

The owner was arrested for outstanding felony warrants.

Kurt said his family could hardly believe his story.

"They didn't even bring me back an ice cream," Bray said. "That was the frustrating part."

The man arrested is facing charges of eluding police, obstructing police and possessing stolen property.

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