Local News

Durham deputy crashes during chase; two men sought

Posted December 31, 2012

— A Durham County deputy crashed his patrol car Monday morning in north Durham while chasing a vehicle that was speeding, according to the sheriff's office.

The deputy's name was not released, but authorities said he wasn't injured. The crash happened near West Murray Avenue and Wilbon Street at about 9:35 a.m.

The deputy began chasing the driver of a silver 2009 Nissan Maxima after an off-duty detective spotted it driving recklessly on U.S. Highway 501, going about 85 mph, according to the sheriff's office.

The chase continued onto Duke Street, where deputies were set up to deploy stop sticks near Leon Street. When the fleeing driver saw the deputies ahead, he braked hard, coming to a sudden stop, and the deputy crashed into the back of the car, authorities said.

The fleeing driver then turned around and headed north on Duke Street and turned left onto West Murray Avenue. The deputy tried to continue the chase in his damaged car, but lost control and crashed into a power pole, authorities said.

The driver of the Maxima, along with a passenger, got away.

Deputies found the abandoned Maxima about three hours later near the intersection of F and Broad streets, authorities said. The car was impounded under North Carolina's "Run and You're Done" law.

Investigators said the registered owner of the car wasn't involved in the chase, and they released an image from a store security video of a man they believe was driving the car. He has a sweatshirt with the phrase "Flipping the Bird" on it and a red ball cap.

Deputies don't have any photos of the passenger in the car but continue to search for him as well.

12 Comments

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  • Lightfoot3 Jan 2, 8:42 a.m.

    A man's got to know his limitations. This deputy didn't. :) Glad he's okay.

  • btneast Dec 31, 4:59 p.m.

    Nice. A $30,000 patrol car destroyed at taxpayers' expense, pedestrians and motorists unnecessarily put at risk,

    How about all the other drivers on 501, where the car was spotted in excess of 85mph and driving erratically? Were they not at risk? Close to 11,000 people were killed in 2009 in speed related accidents, and its on the rise dramatically. Look it up, I just did. Most people think speeding is no big deal, and that LEO's view tickets as an income generator.....but it really is a BIG factor in highway safety......yours and my safety.....

  • btneast Dec 31, 4:49 p.m.

    zoom in the dash cam get the tag and write the owner the ticket and meet him at his home. If you can't get the tag, forget it.

    Then the "owner" claims it was stolen or borrowed by someone else. Any halfway competent defense lawyer can get anyone off in that situation. Speeder/offender has to be caught/arrested by the pursuing officer, because he has to testify in court that this was the person driving "at the time" .

  • btneast Dec 31, 4:44 p.m.

    With modern radio communication and the car's description and license plate number known, there was NO REASON for a chase.

    That only works in the movies.

  • hondaboys Dec 31, 4:19 p.m.

    Badexample, VERY RIGHT !

  • hondaboys Dec 31, 4:17 p.m.

    A officer should be only allowed to chase a car at a speed 15 mph over the posted speed limit, zoom in the dash cam get the tag and write the owner the ticket and meet him at his home. If you can't get the tag, forget it. Not just go crazy and go 100mph in a 35mph. I have seen them chase a bike at over 100mph. NOT SAFE FOR ANYONE, biker, police or the public. He will only get a ticket and they will kick it out of court. Is it worth all of this ????

  • leo-nc Dec 31, 3:16 p.m.

    Badexample, get out there and do it yourself. You can have all the radio communications you want, and you can even have a tag but what you don't have is a driver, a possible murderer in your custody or police offices always perfectly positioned to make it work every time in your little dreamland.

  • mlodata Dec 31, 2:41 p.m.

    Hope they nail those punks

  • Badexample Dec 31, 2:00 p.m.

    Nice. A $30,000 patrol car destroyed at taxpayers' expense, pedestrians and motorists unnecessarily put at risk, and nobody apprehended. With modern radio communication and the car's description and license plate number known, there was NO REASON for a chase. Cowboys.

  • justcommonsense Dec 31, 1:53 p.m.

    He hit the car from behind because THEY spotted the blue lights ahead and slammed on the brakes. They were in front of the deputy, thus THEY would have been the ones who MAY have hit the other officers.

    THEY initiated the whole fiasco by the speed and erratic driving. Why didn't THEY stop when the blue lights first came up behind them? Why did THEY decided to continue on into congested traffice (and yes, Duke street is busy during the day) at high speeds?

    Because they were running from something prior to any persuit.

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