Updated November 16, 2007 at 11:35 a.m.
Steamboat Springs An Oak Creek woman remains in critical condition today at Denver Health Medical Center as a result of injuries suffered in a one-car accident Wednesday afternoon. In a related incident, the woman's husband was arrested Wednesday after coming across the accident scene and leading officers on a short pursuit while attempting to get to the hospital to check on his spouse, who was 37 weeks pregnant at the time of the accident.
Acquaintances of the couple say Heather Naused, 32, gave birth to the child. Hospital officials said they couldn't confirm that information.
Naused, 32, was traveling north on Colorado Highway 131 just outside of Oak Creek at about 1 p.m. Wednesday when she lost control of her 1994 Ford Explorer after hitting a patch of ice, Colorado State Patrol Trooper Rick Kaspar said. Her car went off the east side of the road and up an embankment before rolling back down and coming to rest on the driver's side.
Kaspar and Oak Creek Fire Protection District Chief Chuck Wisecup said the woman was transported by ambulance to Yampa Valley Medical Center with unknown injuries. Naused was conscious and talking after the accident, Kaspar said. Wisecup said she was 37 weeks into her pregnancy.
Naused was transferred to Denver Health Medical Center on Wednesday.
While officers were investigating the accident scene, Harry Naused, Heather's husband, saw his wife's crashed car, flipped a U-turn in front of traffic and stopped in the middle of Colo. 131, Kaspar said. Kaspar said Harry Naused, 38, didn't respond to officers' requests to identify himself and move his vehicle. Harry Naused then got back into his car and headed northbound toward Steamboat Springs.
Oak Creek police Officer Erik Foster chased after Harry Naused, who Kaspar said refused to pull over and was driving 75 mph in a posted 45 mph zone through the Oak Creek canyon. Routt County Sheriff's Office deputies Denis Luark and Ryan Adrian, who were farther northbound on Colo. 131, slowed down to help with the traffic stop. Kaspar said that upon reaching the Sheriff's Office vehicle occupied by Luark and Adrian, Harry Naused pulled into the southbound lane in a nonpassing zone in an apparent attempt to pass the deputies. Kaspar then joined the pursuit and pulled in behind Naused while Foster moved into the southbound lane and pulled alongside Naused. With the Sheriff's Office deputies in front of Naused's car, all three law enforcement vehicles slowed to a stop, trapping Naused and forcing him to stop as well. Kaspar said it was the first time in his seven years in Routt County that he's executed a "rolling roadblock."
Kaspar said Naused continued to refuse to obey officers after he was pulled over. Naused wouldn't leave his car and wouldn't show officers his hands, Kaspar said. The officers physically removed Naused from his vehicle, at which point he was placed under arrest and transported to Routt County Jail.
After learning his identity and what happened to his wife, Kaspar agreed to release Naused from jail, and he escorted him to the hospital.
"We didn't know who Harry was until after we arrested him," Kaspar said.
Harry Naused was given a court summons to face charges of making a U-turn where prohibited, disregarding a lawful order of a police officer directing traffic, attempting to elude police officers and careless driving, Kaspar said.
Heather Naused has not been cited for any traffic violations related to her accident, Kaspar said.
A Steamboat Springs phone number for Harry Naused has been disconnected. He could not be reached for comment Thursday evening.