A Hoopa man died while fleeing from the police on Wednesday.
The body of Darrell Dwight Hostler, 34, was found just after 8 a.m. in the middle of the Trinity River below the Trinity River Bridge by search and rescuers, according to a Hoopa Valley Tribal Police Department press release.
Earlier Wednesday morning at about 5:20, a Hoopa Valley Tribal Police officer attempted to pull over a camouflage Humvee on Tish Tang Road that had been reported stolen from K'ima:w Medical Center on Tuesday, the release said. The Humvee didn't stop, and continued driving on Tish Tang Road toward State Route 96.
The Humvee stopped near the intersection of State Route 96 and Tish Tang Road, and the driver fled the vehicle, running toward the bridge.
According to the release, the officer chased Hostler on foot, ordering him to stop. Hostler continued toward the bridge, and after several more commands to stop, he entered the river.
As the officer lost sight of Hostler, he heard him yell for help. Another man on the bridge said Hostler went under the water and had not surfaced, the release said.
The officer continued to search the area where Hostler was last seen, and entered the water to try and rescue him. After several minutes, the officer had to exit the water due to cold temperatures; the water was about 45 degrees while the air was about 29 degrees, according to the release.
Other tribal police officers along with the Hoopa and Willow Creek volunteer fire departments and Hoopa Ambulance responded to assist in the search, and a boat from the Hoopa Tribal Environmental Protection Agency was launched until Hostler's body was found. Humboldt County District Attorney's Office investigators and a Humboldt County Sheriff's Office detective completed the investigation at the request of Hoopa Valley Tribal Police.
Anyone with more information is asked to contacted Humboldt County Sheriff's Office Detective Greg Musson at 445-7251.