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Friday, Oct. 24, 2014

Community comes together to fix man’s truck after he stopped fleeing driver

By Ashley Kewish, Deseret News

Published: Fri, June 27 11:58 a.m. MDT

 Bryson Rowley's truck was severely damaged after he used it to stop a driver who was evading police and had driven through a busy park last month. The owners of West Valley CARSTAR heard what happened and offered to make the repairs for free.

Bryson Rowley's truck was severely damaged after he used it to stop a driver who was evading police and had driven through a busy park last month. The owners of West Valley CARSTAR heard what happened and offered to make the repairs for free.

(Steve Landeen, Deseret News)

WEST VALLEY CITY — When Bryson Rowley used his truck to stop a driver tearing through a busy park in Syracuse for a third time, he was concerned about the kids in the park, not the damage it would cause to his truck.

As he was being chased by police on May 31, the boy drove a stolen car through Founders Park near 500 South and 1900 West in Syracuse not once, but twice. A video of the incident shows people screaming and children running out of the way.

Rowley was at the park with his family. When he saw the car coming toward the park a third time, he jumped into his truck to try and cut off the driver. As the car rounded a corner, the two vehicles collided and the chase was over.

Rowley’s Dodge Ram had significant suspension and steering problems after it crashed into the car, which was being driven by a 14-year-old boy.

When the two owners of West Valley CARSTAR heard what happened to Rowley’s truck, they said they knew they needed to help.

“I was watching the news and I saw it and I was shocked, for one,” said Bryan Ellison, a co-owner of the CARSTAR body shop. “If that was one of my kids in the park and something happened to him, I'd be a wreck.”

The truck had about $7,500 in damages.

Ellison said he knew insurance wouldn’t pay for the repairs because it was done intentionally, so he offered to make all the repairs for free.

“I didn't know what to expect,” Rowley said. “They actually just showed up at my house with a rental car and a tow truck and took my truck from me.”

But then word started spreading.

"Once you start the ball rolling, it's kind of a snowball effect,” Ellison said. “People want to help.”

In addition to a $7,500 repair job, the auto body shop along with local business donated extra parts to the tune of $15,000.

He picked up the new and improved truck this week, after three weeks in the shop. When he saw his truck, he was overwhelmed.

“There are no words,” Rowley said. “I don't know how you can tell someone thanks for doing that. Amazing. It was unexpected. I appreciate everybody who had something to do with it.”

Rowley said the completely detailed truck is like brand new.

“The whole bumper is new, the hooks, the LED lights,” Rowley said. There was no damage to the rear bumper, but they put in a new one so it would match the front.

"If anyone wants to run into him again, they're in trouble because those bumpers are stronger than my house,” Ellison said.

He said Rowley’s actions to protect the children in the park proves there are still good people in this world.

“We can’t thank him enough for saving people’s lives possibly,” Ellison said. “People are priceless. A car can be fixed.”

Email: akewish@deseretnews.com

Civilian ends a high-speed car chase

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1. gee-en
Salt Lake City, UT,
June 27, 2014

So great that the community would do this for him...just as great that he did something for the community.

2. sid 6.7
Holladay, UT,
June 27, 2014

Well done Mr. Rowley well done.

Class act by all the sponsors who chipped in to fix his truck which is beautiful by the way. I will make sure to frequent your establishments as much as I can.

Finally some one who truly loves and protects his community gets the recognition they deserve.

One for the good guy's!

3. Eliyahu
Pleasant Grove, UT,
June 28, 2014

Assuming that the guy he helped stopped is convicted, part of the legal financial obligations imposed by the court will be restitution. The good news for at least some of the generous people who helped fix the truck is that anything that covers the cost of restoring the truck to the condition it was in before the accident will have to be repaid to them by the other driver, along with damage to the car he stole and anything else he damaged along the way.

4. Kings Court
Alpine, UT,
June 28, 2014

They may need to raise money for Rowley to pay for the 14 year olds faked medical costs and the lawsuit that will surely follow. You know how lawyers circle like vultures waiting for an opportunity to make money.

5. Eliyahu
Pleasant Grove, UT,
June 28, 2014

@KingsCourt

"They may need to raise money for Rowley to pay for the 14 year olds faked medical costs and the lawsuit that will surely follow. You know how lawyers circle like vultures waiting for an opportunity to make money."

Let's be serious here. No attorney is going to take a case that's a stone cold loser. Do you think a Utah jury is going to feel sorry for the driver who fled cops in a stolen car? The attorney doesn't get a penny unless he wins in a civil suit, and the costs of putting such a case forward are huge. In theory, the burden of costs is on the client, but since the attorney usually fronts those costs, he'd have to be nuts to take a case like that. He'd also be taking a risk of court sanctions for frivolous filing. Attorneys may be many things, but they're generally not stupid.