North Idaho

Freeway chase suspect charged with felony eluding

Marcus Rael, recovering in hospital, will make first court appearance Monday

Freeway chase suspect charged with felony eluding

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho - Marcus Rael, the man suspected of a shootout with law enforcement officers in Post Falls has been charged with the first of many counts he will face for that early morning gunfight.

Rael, who was wounded in that gunfight with 12 officers from multiple law enforcement agencies, is recovering so well at Kootenai Health that his first court appearance is scheduled for Monday. Wednesday afternoon Kootenai County Sheriff's deputies paid him a visit in his hospital room to serve him his arrest warrant.

The first charge he's facing is for eluding a Coeur d'Alene police officer who tried to pull Rael over on Sherman Avenue Sunday morning. Court documents allege Rael endangered the officer's safety but don't say how or what was the reason for the traffic stop.

Rael then led officers a 13-mile pursuit that ended in Post Falls. The 24-year-old barricaded himself inside his pickup truck and when he allegedly shot at officers, 12 of them shot back in a barrage of gunfire caught on a cellphone recording by an eyewitness.

Since his arrival at the Kootenai Health emergency room Sunday Rael has been kept under constant guard. While he's been busy recuperating from his injuries Rael also found the opportunity to hire a private Coeur d'Alene defense attorney, Sean Walsh, who has asked that his client's clothing and truck be preserved as evidence.

While Rael's only been charged for eluding, more charges are expected, including aggravated assault on the officers who allegedly fired at.

As soon as he's well enough to leave his hospital room he will be transferred to the jail, where Rael will be held in lieu of a $1 Million bond.