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2 Arrested In Connection With Hercules Woman’s Murder, West Coast Crime Spree

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Susie Ko

Susie Ko (CBS)

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SEATTLE (KCBS) — Two suspects have been arrested and the stolen vehicle of a murdered Hercules woman has been recovered in the Seattle area, according to police.

According to the sheriff’s department in King County, Wash., an officer in SeaTac spotted a blue Subaru belonging to 55-year-old Susie Ko around 9 a.m. Wednesday. Ko, a retired school teacher and mother of four, was found fatally stabbed in her home Friday night.

Authorities said Ko’s Subaru was occupied by two suspects, 24-year-old Darnell Washington and his wife, 25-year-old Tania Washington.

Instead of yielding to the officer, Darnell Washington sped away, slamming into the officer’s vehicle in the process, according to the King County Sheriff’s Department.

Police followed the Subaru, which only stopped after police boxed the car in. Tania Washington then jumped into the car’s backseat and her husband repeatedly rammed into the police cars in an attempt to flee the area, sheriff’s officials said.

“Luckily we had him boxed in good enough where he couldn’t leave. The deputies both drew their guns and eventually ordered them out at gunpoint,” said Sgt. Cindi West of the King County Sheriff’s Office.

stolen subaru found 101012 2 Arrested In Connection With Hercules Womans Murder, West Coast Crime Spree

A Subaru belonging to Hercules murder victim Susie Ko was found in a Seattle, Washington suburb on October 10, 2012. Two people have been arrested in the case. (King County Sheriff’s Department)

The suspects were arrested on local charges and are being detained on the stolen vehicle case. Detectives from Hercules will be traveling to Washington to interview the suspects.

West said the suspects are being investigated by Hercules Police in connection with Ko’s murder.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said  Darnell Washington allegedly escaped from the San Bernardino County Jail on Aug. 28 with the help of his wife.

Authorities believe the pair went on a crime spree after Washington’s escape that included the shooting of a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s deputy on Sept. 2 after the deputy spotted Darnell Washington and attempted to detain him. The pair fled the area after carjacking a vehicle, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff’s officials.

The couple dumped that stolen vehicle in the city of South Gate and allegedly carjacked another car.

Detectives from Los Angeles County and King County will join Hercules investigators to determine the extent of the crimes the couple committed since Darnell Washington’s escape from jail.

Their arrest Wednesday morning and the recovery of the stolen Subaru comes less than a week after police found Ko, unconscious and suffering from stab wounds in her home on Ash Court. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Officers arrived at the home after Ko’s husband called neighbors when she didn’t arrive to pick him up at the airport Friday night as planned.

Ko’s vehicle went missing from the home the night of her murder, prompting a widespread search for the car in the hopes that it would lead to her killers.

The FBI also stepped in temporarily to assist Hercules police in gathering evidence, Van Putten said.

The victim’s family created a website, welovesusieko.com, seeking help from the public in locating the murder suspects as well as her Subaru Outback.

Ko was the principal of Hilltop Chinese School and an elementary school teacher at St. Patrick’s School Rodeo and is survived by her husband and four adult children.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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