WENATCHEE — A former convict is accused of endangering his three young children and abusing his former girlfriend while trying to avoid police by car.
Christopher L. Josey, 27, grabbed the wheel of the woman’s moving car and steered it toward oncoming traffic after she threatened to expose him to arrest Aug. 2, police said. The woman said Josey’s sons, two 2-year-olds and a 7-year-old, were in the car; Josey had not buckled one of the small children in and he was tossed around the backseat as the car swerved.
He was arraigned Monday in Chelan County Superior Court on charges of felony harassment, unlawful imprisonment, fourth-degree assault, reckless endangerment and interfering with the reporting of domestic violence.
Josey had summoned his former girlfriend about 8 a.m. to pick him up at a house off Springwater Avenue, where police had arrived while Josey was visiting another woman in violation of a no-contact order. She said Josey ran to her car with two children in tow and ordered her to drive so he could avoid contact with police. Josey’s third child had arrived in the car with the victim.
As the two fought over the steering wheel and the victim threatened to report him to police, Josey also seized her cell phone, dangled her purse out the window until her wallet fell out on the street, and threatened her with harm.
Oncoming cars had to veer aside as the vehicle traveled eastbound on Ninth Street. At one point, Josey bodily restrained the woman from exiting the car near the Wenatchee police station, she said. She later drove him to her East Wenatchee home, while he kept control of her cellphone and refused to let her contact police. She reported the incident the following day.
The victim said after the ordeal ended about noon, Josey forced her to drive him to his scheduled anger management class.
The highest penalty possible among Josey’s charges is five years in prison. He was previously convicted of residential burglary, drug possession, second-degree escape and breaking a domestic violence court order; he served two years in state prison starting in October 2010.
He faces trial Oct. 8.