Police chase leads to multiple charges for Westminster man

Pursuit starts in Baltimore, ends with crash into tree in Carroll County yard

February 09, 2005|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF

A 41-year-old Westminster-area man was jailed yesterday on charges that he led police on a chase from Baltimore City, through Baltimore County and into Carroll.

The driver sped and left the road - at one point heading the wrong way on Route 140 - before he drove through a yard and hit a tree, according to state police and charging documents.

Anthony Ray Atwell of the 1400 block of Brehm Road has been charged with three criminal offenses: malicious destruction of property, possession of an illegal drug and possession of drug paraphernalia, which included suspected crack cocaine and a glass smoking pipe, according to the charging documents.

He also was charged with 15 traffic offenses, including attempting to elude police and speeding.

No injuries were reported, authorities said.

The incident began Monday morning in Baltimore with a report of a vehicle being sought in an assault on an officer there, according to state police at Westminster.

Baltimore County police said the suspect later was involved in a hit-and-run accident with a county police cruiser. Charges are pending in both the county and the city, according to the state police.

The city officer was not injured, said Officer Nicole Monroe, a city police spokeswoman.

At 12:17 p.m., a Baltimore County police dispatcher notified the Westminster barracks that police cars and a helicopter had followed a blue Dodge Durango to the county line, said state police, who picked up what became a 12-mile pursuit through Carroll County.

The driver headed west on Route 140 at speeds exceeding 100 mph, passing several vehicles on the right shoulder, according to the charging documents. The driver eluded a state trooper waiting with stop sticks by crossing the grass median and heading west in the eastbound lane of Route 140 before returning to the westbound lane.

The driver turned north onto Bethel Road, passing vehicles on the left and several times crossing the center line, according to the charging documents. The Durango then turned onto Dutrow Road, increasing its speed to 80 mph in a 40 mph zone.

The driver drove off the road to the right of another state trooper waiting with stop sticks on Leisters Church Road, according to the charging documents, and another trooper took evasive action to avoid a collision.

The driver was arrested after he turned onto Gorsuch Road and drove into a front yard in the 400 block of North Gorsuch Road, hitting a tree as he tried to re-enter the road, according to the charging documents.

Atwell was ordered held at the Carroll County Detention Center on $75,000 bail after an appearance before a District Court judge in Carroll County yesterday.

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