A Washington man, who had recently gotten out of a mental hospital, stole a school bus and fled with it Saturday, leading law enforcement officers on a wild chase.

His escapade only ended the next day after he drove a loader through his estranged wife's home. Andrew Loudon was arrested by the Chewelah Police on Sunday, and faces charges of theft of a motor vehicle, possession of a stolen vehicle, first-degree malicious mischief/domestic violence, and attempting to elude a police vehicle, KIRO 7 reported.

The 39-year-old was clad in a yellow dress when he stole the bus from an area east of Leavenworth. Chelan County Sheriff’s deputies, who responded to the incident, soon located the bus heading east. 

According to them, Loudon ran a red light near Monitor. Though they tried to pull him over, Loudon drove off. The deputies then dropped their pursuit because of the new state police reform law, which says a vehicle can be chased only when there is probable cause of a violent offense or other crimes. 

According to the new norms, a pursuit can be to "identify or apprehend the person" or if the driver poses an imminent threat to others. A supervisor has to give authorization, the sheriff’s office said in the statement. 

Though the Douglas County deputies picked up the trail and followed him for another 10 minutes, they too discontinued as per the new reform laws.

According to the Chelan County Sheriff’s office, after he lost the deputies, Loudon abandoned the school bus near Moses Lake and then apparently hitchhiked to Spokane and then Chewelah, where his wife lived, New York Post reported.

He then managed to steal a front-end loader, which he drove straight into his wife's house Sunday night. He also flipped a car into the home.

"The suspect’s wife had fled the home when she learned her estranged husband may be nearby," the sheriff said in the statement. 

It was there the Chewelah Police finally arrested him. The officers then contacted the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office and informed them the bus-theft suspect was in custody.

Chelan County deputies then verified his identity. Loudon was wearing the same yellow dress then, police said. 

arrested1 Representational image. Photo: Pixabay