UPDATE, Wednesday, Noon: Identity released of the suspect, Ashleigh Marie, Smedley, 26. She faces charges of possessing a Controlled Dangerous Suspect, burglary, attempting to elude a police officer and unauthorized use of a vehicle, among other things. She was transported to the Oklahoma County Jail this morning from the Edmond City Jail. Luther Police Chief David Randall said the other two suspects are NOT in custody, but authorities believe they are not in our area.
When Edmond police and other agencies were searching for suspects Tuesday night on Sorghum Mill Road, they used a police helicopter and a canine unit and had several officers from several agencies combing the area.
All the while, the female suspect allegedly was in a tree watching it all unfold.
Authorities say the female suspect, described in her late 20s, bailed out of a stolen car after a police pursuit that began in Edmond and headed east to end at Sorghum Mill between Triple X and Peebly Roads. She apparently ran out of the car and shimmied up a tree, and watched the action. Later she told authorities, there were two other suspects with her. However, no names or descriptions have been released on the trio. And there’s no word on the whereabouts of the other two suspects.
Luther Police Chief David Randall said the suspect also apparently told authorities after her eventual arrest that she watched someone on a phone recording, which likely was The Luther Register doing a live report as the search was shutting down just after midnight amid the shine of the police car lights on the dark road.
During the night, after all of the authorities were long gone, a security alarm went off on a pickup at 3:45 am. The residents called 911.
According to the resident, when the county officer arrived around 4 am, he checked the pickup and found it locked and checked around the house, barn and outbuildings and left.
Seems the female suspect was in the pickup then, and watched the officer check the door. She saw him but the officer didn’t see her. The 16-year-old resident of the home also didn’t see her when he took off just after daybreak for work.
Can you imagine the jolt of surprise when the suspect grabbed the teen while he was driving? Under pressure, he managed to do what the authorities could not, he safely detained her. Another call to 911, Luther Police quickly returned to the scene and took the suspect to jail in Edmond.
Our Luther teen is “shook,” but okay. Many are calling him courageous. His family is heartsick about the scenarios of what could have happened. But grateful it did not. Neighbors are concerned about why police leave a scene when suspects are at large.
Similar scenarios have occurred in our area. In March, a suspect outran police and got away after clipping a road construction worker. Another was in December when a suspect was never found who allegedly stabbed a Luther Police Officer.
Luther Police discovered this morning’s suspect had a warrant with Oklahoma County and Edmond. As the day went on, Edmond police investigators were pinning her to dozens of recent burglaries. Her identity has not been released as the case is built for formal charges.
While Chief Randall says that the area of this morning’s search was out of Luther Police Department’s coverage area, he said his department will help anyone who needs it. He reminds folks to keep the doors locked, keys out of the vehicle and always call 911 in an emergency.