EL PASO COUNTY — News 5's Dianne Derby sat down for an exclusive interview with El Paso County Sheriff's Deputy Brent Yelton, who survived a violent chase after a kidnapping and domestic violence suspect rammed into his vehicle.
The victim of the domestic violence-related charges was also inside the vehicle, and it was later determined she was being held against her will.
According to a press release, the El Paso Sheriff’s Office had been investigating 29-year-old Kenneth Archuleta on various domestic violence complaints. Two separate felony warrants were issued for his arrest resulting from these investigations.
On Monday night, just after 10 p.m., the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office received a report that Kenneth was in a stolen vehicle near the 1700 block of Hampton South. According to Yelton, Kenneth reportedly saw El Paso County Sheriff's deputies arriving and then left.
As deputies arrived, Kenneth reportedly drove away at a high speed. Yelton said he was parallel with Kenneth on B Street and eventually tried to disable Kenneth. Kenneth then intentionally rammed into Yelton's vehicle.
"Split-second after I hit him, he got away from me, the first thing I want to do is call my wife," said Yelton.
After hitting Kenneth's vehicle, Yelton said his car became disabled and Kenneth was able to flee. Yelton told News 5 he did not realize that Kenneth's victim was in the car until Kenneth rammed into his vehicle.
"When I saw him coming at me head-on, I saw her, and the look on her face was absolute fear," said Yelton.
Yelton said that the chase lasted for about another five to eight minutes until Kenneth's car became disabled somewhere on Academy. Kenneth was taken into custody and the woman was rescued from the vehicle. She was treated for minor injuries, no one else was injured.
Yelton said it was a big relief to hear that the woman who was in Kenneth's car was unharmed.
"My biggest fear was when he hit me he backed up to get away from him again, and for me, I tried to block him from leaving again I pulled my car in and hit his passengers side," said Yelton, "I was terrified I had hit him where she was sitting and it scared me and when I found out she was ok I felt a lot better."
Kenneth was booked into the El Paso County Jail on the following Felony charges:
- 1st Degree Aggravated Motor Vehicle Theft
- Vehicular Eluding
- Intimidation of a Victim or Witness
- 2nd Degree Kidnapping
- 2nd Degree Assault on a Peace Officer
- Vehicular Assault and Criminal Mischief
- numerous Misdemeanor charges and traffic-related offenses.