Lake County Sheriff Don Bell and his staff have had a busy 24 hours, with the apprehension of a wanted suspect in one incident, and another in which a deputy received second and third degree burns assisting a motorist.

Bell said the first incident occurred at about 5:00 p.m. on Tuesday when 43 year-old Shane Nault was arrested after what was termed a brief water and land pursuit.

“Nault had been spotted working at a business in Woods Bay by ATF agents who then notified Lake County Deputies,” said Bell. “Immediately upon seeing law enforcement, he entered Flathead Lake and swam out into the bay.  A private citizen was gracious enough to allow the use of his boat for the apprehension of Nault, however prior to launch, Nault was able to swim to shore in the Driftwood Lane area.”

Bell said deputies then pursued the suspect.

“A short foot pursuit ensued through thick brush, and Nault was eventually arrested by a Deputy near the lake shore,” he said. “Nault is being held on numerous warrants involving drugs in addition to his federal warrant for federal weapons and drug trafficking violations and local charges of resisting arrest and obstructing a peace officer involving the pursuit.”

Bell said no deputies or civilians were injured during the pursuit.

In the second incident that occurred just an hour later, Bell said one of his deputies stopped to assist a motorist who was having car trouble.

“The vehicle was broken down on Highway 93 near Ronan,” said Bell. “While rendering assistance, the carburetor on the vehicle backfired, spewing flames and gasoline onto the deputy causing 2nd and 3rd degree burns to his face and hands.”

Bell said EMT’s rushed to aid the injured deputy.

“The deputy was hospitalized and later flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle for burn treatment.  The deputy has maintained consciousness throughout the ordeal and is in stable condition.”

The deputy's name has been released by the Lake County Sheriff's Office as Nathan White. He is being treated in Seattle and will be released shortly. Sheriff Bell is grateful for the outpouring of support from the public and other law enforcement agencies.