Olympia man accused of leading deputies on chase down Highway 12

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Lewis County deputies say an Olympia man sped down U.S. Highway 12 on Friday, failing to stop for pursuing deputies and causing other vehicles to go off the road to avoid collisions.

Thomas S. Brannam, 27, was charged with attempting to elude a pursuing police vehicle and driving with a suspended license.

However, defense attorney Rachael Tiller said Brannam denies that he was intentionally leading deputies on a chase. She said Brannam believes that a 911 call he made during the pursuit will clear up the situation.

According to a probable cause affidavit, a deputy clocked Brannam going 91 miles per hour in a 55 mph zone in the 3600 block of U.S. Highway 12. The speeding vehicle – a 1998 Toyota Avalon – had passed another vehicle on a double yellow line and on a blind corner.

The deputy activated her lights and sirens and gave chase, but the deputy said Brannam failed to pull over.

“The Toyota continued passing westbound vehicles by using the eastbound lanes, causing eastbound traffic to have to leave the roadway to avoid a collision,” court documents read.

Another deputy joined the chase and the Toyota slowed to 50 mph, but still didn’t stop, according to documents.

Spike strips were laid down on the road, but the car stopped and Brannam was arrested before the vehicle hit the strips.

During a hearing in Lewis County Superior Court Monday, Judge Joely O'Rourke imposed $25,000 bail, in accordance with a request from the Lewis County Prosecutor’s Office.