Libby, Montana witnessed a shocking incident on January 13, 2023, when a male suspect deliberately crashed his pickup truck into a house on Dakota Avenue. The chaos continued as the suspect attached a tow strap to a parked vehicle and proceeded to drag it through town. Along the way, he collided with multiple vehicles, a residential fence, and an electrical pole, causing significant damage.
The pursuit of the stolen vehicle began when a Libby Police Officer spotted it on California Avenue near Highway 2. Despite the officer’s attempts to stop the suspect, he refused to comply and continued dragging the stolen vehicle east on Highway 2. A slow-speed chase unfolded through the town, leading to a collision with a pickup truck equipped with a plow. The tow strap broke off, leaving the stolen vehicle abandoned on the road. The suspect then fled north on California Avenue, leaving the city limits.
Libby Police Officers and Lincoln County Sheriff’s Deputies took up the pursuit, heading west on Pipe Creek Road. The chase escalated into a high-speed pursuit, but it had to be terminated due to dangerous speeds and road conditions. The suspect was identified as 37-year-old Caleb Covey from Troy, Montana. Law enforcement officers returned to Libby to assess the damage caused and provide aid to anyone in need.
Later on, the suspect was reported to be returning to town, prompting deputies to reinitiate the pursuit. During this pursuit, Covey crashed into another motorist’s vehicle and continued west on US Highway 2 towards Troy. The Libby Police Officers discontinued their pursuit to ensure a law enforcement presence remained in Libby. However, the deputies continued chasing Covey west on Highway 2 until he turned south on Highway 56, entering Sanders County.
At approximately mile marker 4.5 on Montana Highway 56, deputies from the Sanders County Sheriff’s Office successfully deployed spike strips. Despite driving on deflated tires and eventually rims, Covey persisted west on Highway 200 into Idaho. Finally, the suspect was apprehended by the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office.
Covey sustained several self-inflicted wounds during the ordeal, and Lincoln County Deputies provided lifesaving medical aid before transporting him to meet an ambulance. He was then transferred to Kootenai Health by air ambulance, where he remains in critical condition.
The incident is currently under investigation by the Libby Police Department, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, and the Idaho State Police. It serves as a reminder for motorists to exercise caution and move off the roadway when they encounter a vehicle pursuit or law enforcement with their emergency lights activated. This proactive measure ensures the safety of everyone involved and allows law enforcement to focus on stopping the pursuit or reaching their destination safely. In case of any damage caused by a pursuit, individuals are advised to park in a safe location and contact local dispatch for follow-up.