FIFE, Wash. -- Two men with 43 kilos of cocaine mistakenly stumbled upon a swarm of K-9 handlers and their dogs as the drug suspects fled police in Fife Thursday night, police told KIRO 7 Eyewitness News.
Officers happened upon the cocaine while conducting anti-prostitution patrols along Highway 99.
Fife police Lt. Tom Thompson said the officers spotted a man in a Ford Explorer sitting in his vehicle behind the Flying J truck stop around 8 p.m., and suspected he might be driving through the area looking for prostitutes.
Thompson said as the officers watched, another man suddenly appeared from some bushes carrying two large duffel bags that he placed into the Explorer.
Thompson said the man then returned into the bushes and came back out with more duffel bags.
Officers became suspicious and attempted to stop the men, but the driver hit the gas and took off.
Thompson said officers chased the men into Fife's south side, where the driver drove down a dead end street. Once there, Thompson says the men got out of the SUV and began running.
By coincidence, the suspects stopped their vehicle at a spot where more than a dozen police K-9 officers and 16 police dogs from several Pierce county departments were conducting a regularly scheduled training session.
Thompson said the men, seeing the large number of officers and dogs, surrendered.
Upon searching the vehicle, investigators found 43 kilos of cocaine inside the duffel bags.
Thompson said the two suspects claimed to be Mexican citizens, but refused to provide identification to police. They have been arrested on drug trafficking charges.
July 9, 2010