Vacationing Muleshoe family witnesses chase of fugitives

Courtesy photo: RayAn Dosher The view from the vehicle of RayAn and Cary Dosher, who were traveling south along I-25 Wednesday adjacent to the standoff between police and the “Dougherty Gang,” a trio of siblings who were sought by the FBI for an alleged three-state crime spree.

Kevin Wilson

RayAn and Cary Dosher flipped on a local news broadcast from their Pueblo, Colo., hotel Tuesday night — unaware that the next day, they were part of a story they had just seen.

The next morning, the Muleshoe residents found themselves spectators in a high-speed chase on I-25 that brought in three of the FBI’s most wanted fugitives.

“We had stopped at a Love’s truck stop right outside Pueblo for the kids to use the bathroom and stuff,” said RayAn, who is retired and has lived off and on in Muleshoe most of her life. “We were heading back home (from a Colorado vacation). We got a few miles down the road and two troopers went by us at a high rate of speed. They didn’t have their lights on, but they just flew by.”

A few minutes later, they were nearly clipped by a white Isuzu “flying” by them.

“We knew something was going on,” she said. “We didn’t know what it was.”

They’d later find out the police were setting up spikes to stop the white vehicle — which contained Dylan, Ryan and Lee Grace Dougherty, known as the “Dougherty Gang.”

The roadblock was the end of a 20-mile chase, and the start of a shootout between police and the Dougherty trio.

“We looked behind us and you could see the flashing lights coming,” Dosher said. “There were about eight state trooper units. We got off the road then and stopped. We sat there probably two hours before they would let us leave.”

The gang now faces an avalanche of charges for an alleged three-state crime spree that started in Florida, included a bank robbery in Georgia and finished with the shootout. Cary Dosher told her wife he heard some gunfire in the distance, but she never did.

“We had just seen (a report about the gang) the night before on television,” Dosher said. “We found out later that where they spotted them was that Love’s truck stop.”

The family believes they saw Dylan Dougherty at the truck stop, which included a Subway restaurant, and said they only remembered him because it was odd to see somebody with a Subway foot-long sandwich at 9 a.m.

An officer came by to update motorists, and told the Doshers they had shot “her” — in reference to a non-fatal wound to Lee Grace Dougherty.

The family was eventually re-routed and got home to Muleshoe in the evening. They watched the news again — a Headline News broadcast — and saw their Suburban in footage of the standoff. It was the first vehicle in the long line of traffic behind a wall of police cars.

“I would have been happier to have been further back,” Dosher said. “But the traffic was stacked up so far behind us we couldn’t turn around.”