15-year-old arrested after 17-mile high-speed chase ends in woods

August 19, 1994|By Bill Talbott | Bill Talbott,Sun Staff Writer

A 15-year-old at the wheel of a pickup truck refused to stop when he was clocked speeding and led police on a 17-mile chase across roads, fields and woods at speeds up to 75 mph yesterday.

Westminster police said the youth took his father's pickup from his home in the 900 block of Ridge Road in Finksburg and drove to Westminster.

About 11:05 a.m. Officer Doug Johnston was working a radar detail on Cranberry Road near Cranberry Mall when a Dodge pickup was clocked at 46 mph in a 30-mph zone.

The officer attempted to stop the truck. The driver pulled into a private drive and drove through a yard, refusing to stop, police said.

A pursuit ensued involving patrol cars of the city, the sheriff's department and the state police. A state police helicopter joined later.

Officials said the fleeing truck drove into the parking lot of Cranberry Mall, weaving and narrowly missing pedestrians and vehicles. The driver then went out of the mall lot, north on Route 27, right on Cranberry Road and right on Brehm Road, followed by patrol cars with sirens wailing. Police said the teen-ager drove in to a field off Carrollton Road and continued his flight along several other roads until he drove into Harper Drive, a dead-end road off Ridge Road.

The youth but drove across the lawn of the last house on the road and into the woods, plowing through brush and small trees, police said.

During the chase, police had noted the license number of the truck and were waiting for the teen-ager when he arrived at home on foot. The truck was found in the woods behind the youth's house.

Officers placed many traffic charges against the driver, including speeding, reckless driving, fleeing and eluding police, stop sign violations and driving without a license.

The youth was released in the custody of his older sister pending juvenile court action.

A criminal charge of malicious destruction of property has also been filed against him and other criminal charges are pending, police said.

No one was injured in the chase, according to police.

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