Drugs suspected in deadly, high-speed Lynnwood hit-and-run

The driver, 29, guessed he was going 100 mph in a 30 mph zone, according to police reports.

LYNNWOOD — A suspect in a deadly hit-and-run admitted he might have been going 100 mph on Lynnwood streets, before he slammed into the driver’s side of a Chevy Aveo, according to police reports filed in court.

The crash killed Khanh Tran, 66, of Seattle.

An Edmonds police officer was stopped in a marked car around 3 p.m. Sunday in the 21000 block of 72nd Avenue.

He saw a white Jaguar XE blow through a stop sign at about 40 mph. The car ran a red light and turned north onto 76th Avenue W.

The officer tried to catch up, but the Jaguar accelerated to an estimated 100-plus mph as it passed College Place elementary and middle schools, according to police reports. The speed limit is 30 mph. The officer slowed down, shut off his flashing lights and kept following at a distance.

At that moment, Tran was turning left out of a private driveway in the 19800 block of 76th. The Jaguar’s front end hit the driver’s side of his Aveo with such force that the XE spun to a rest on top of the hood of a parked Jeep Patriot, crushing one rear wheel into the windshield.

Tran was not conscious. He died at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, police said.

No one was in the parked Jeep.

The Jaguar driver, meanwhile, ran from his mangled car. Witnesses pointed police to a QFC. Joshua Krueger, 29, rushed through the store and out the back, to a loading dock, where the Edmonds officer spotted him. He took off again. The officer outran him and put him in handcuffs.

Police searched Krueger and found he’d been carrying aluminum foil and a pen hollowed out for ingesting drugs, court papers say.

He shivered as he reportedly told police that he’d panicked when he saw an officer behind him. He hit the gas to try to get away, he said. He agreed to undergo sobriety tests, and an Edmonds officer determined Krueger appeared to have been using stimulants and painkillers. A Superior Court judge granted a warrant to draw his blood, to be tested for drugs.

A decade ago, Krueger was convicted as a minor of drinking alcohol and driving. He served a five-day jail sentence, listened to a panel of drunken driving victims and paid $2,692 in fines. Probation violations tacked on months to his jail time.

Over the past six years, Krueger has been convicted twice of driving with a suspended license in Kenmore, driving under the influence in Bothell and operating a vehicle without an ignition interlock device in Shoreline.

In a recorded interview, the defendant reportedly admitted to being the only person in the Jaguar, and that his speed could have reached 100 mph. The car was not registered to him. It was not clear if he had permission to borrow it, according to Lynnwood police.

Krueger was arrested for investigation of vehicular homicide, hit-and-run of a fatal crash and attempting to elude law enforcement.

His bail was set at $200,000. He was still in jail Friday.

Investigators are still trying to track down witnesses. Tips can be directed to Lynnwood police Sgt. Jason Valentine at 425-670-5642.

Caleb Hutton: 425-339-3454; chutton@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @snocaleb.

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