Man Arrested after High Speed Chase with Lake County Sheriffs Deputies

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The following is told from the perspective of the officer on scene. All information is from the corresponding police affidavit.

 

John Moss
John Moss

“On January 9th, 2019 at approximately 4:41 PM, deputies were notified of a car theft that had just occurred at the Kangaroo gas station located at CR 42 & SR 19 in Altoona, FL.”

“While canvassing the area, deputies located the vehicle and trailer on Grasshopper Rd at the intersection of SR 19. Observing the vehicle was a single black male occupant outside of the vehicle attempting to unhook the attached trailer. As deputies attempted to turn around to make contact, the driver got back into the vehicle and began driving south on SR 19 at a high rate of speed.”

“Deputies then activated all emergency lights and sound equipment in the attempt to initiate a traffic stop, however, the driver failed to yield and continued south on SR 19. After disengaging the vehicle, deputies lost sight of it for a short period of time. The trailer attached to the truck at the time was hauling large, full-grown palm trees.”

“After continuing south on SR 19 we then noticed the trailer with the palm trees swerving in and out of traffic. A short time later we noticed the truck and trailer going into the oncoming lane of travel and at times running northbound traffic completely off the highway as motorists were avoiding a head-on collision due to the defendant’s pattern of driving and total disregard for anyone else safety much less his own.”

“At this point, the defendant continued south on SR 19 before striking a stop stick that was deployed along SR 19 by Umatilla Police Officers and another deputy. The defendant began slowing down as he approached the intersection of SR 19 and CR 42. Once at CR 42, the defendant attempted to turn right to head westbound on CR 42. At that time he struck a Nelsons Tree Service truck that was sitting at the red light facing eastbound in the lane. The defendant then exited the vehicle and ran in a north-east direction.”

“A victim was sitting at the intersection at SR 19 and CR 42 when he realized the road was blocked due to the incident. The victim took an alternate route on a road north-east of the intersection on West Altoona Rd. The defendant was also on West Altoona Rd where he ran towards the victim and began knocking on his window. As the defendant was doing so he was reaching in his waistband as if he were trying to grab something. The victim then drove off.”

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“While speaking with the victim he stated he felt as if the defendant was trying to take his car. The victim then drove off to separate him from the situation.”

“I arrived in the area where the defendant was spotted running through an open field still in a north-east direction towards a house where a white van was parked in the back yard. I saw him run in front of the van, cutting towards an east direction. I pulled my fully marked patrol vehicle with emergency lights activated on the east side of the van and observed the defendant run towards it in an attempt to cut him off.”

“As I got parallel with the van window, I observed the defendant in the driver’s seat of the van and that it was moving in a reverse direction at a very slow speed. Both the front passenger and front driver windows were down. I was able to step on the running board on the passenger side and tase the subject and place the vehicle in park to stop it from moving any further. Other deputies then removed him through the driver side door and secure him in handcuffs. Contact was made with the owner of the van and he stated that he did not have permission to take it.”

“The defendant was then transported to the Lake County Jail without incident.”

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