Arkansas State Police apprehended an individual involved in a vehicle pursuit that began in Morrilton and ended near Conway’s Municipal Airport on Monday morning.
James Carpenter fled in a blue Buick when officers attempted to conduct a traffic stop for a speeding violation south of Interstate 40 on Highway 9, near Highway 64.
According to Bill Sadler, public information officer for the ASP, Carpenter failed to stop and proceeded east toward Plumerville, along Highway 64.
"As the pursuit continued into Faulkner County, state troopers attempted to stop the fleeing car using a tire deflation device," Sadler said in an e-mail. "Carpenter continued into Conway with one tire of the vehicle deflated and near Jeanette Drive, abandoned the vehicle, which had caught fire."
The vehicle came to a stop near the corner of Ninth Avenue and Jeanette Drive.
Saddler said Carpenter fled the scene on foot and was shortly apprehended by state troopers.
Kym Schluterman, witness of the pursuit on Highway 64, said she entered the highway, turning right from Hogan Lane, and was immediately followed by a male motorist in a four-door sedan.
Schluterman said he was aggressively pursuing her and trying to "ram" her vehicle.
"My first reaction was that this man was trying to get me to speed up," Schluterman said. "I was going the speed limit, and I looked in my rear view mirror and saw at least seven police cars. I thought, ‘Oh no, I’m in the middle of a police chase.’"
Schluterman said she was followed closely by the suspect for six minutes and was unable to move to the shoulder or stop.
"We rounded a curve and we were on a straight stretch, going at least 80 miles-per-hour on Highway 64. Thank God no traffic was coming," Schluterman said.
After one more minute, Schluterman said, the suspect passed her vehicle and she was able to pull safely to the shoulder.
Sadler said Carpenter was taken to a Morrilton hospital for examination, and was later released to state troopers, who booked him into the Conway County Jail on charges of fleeing.
Additional charges may be pending following a review of a report to be presented to prosecutors.
(Staff writer Courtney Spradlin can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 505-1236. To comment on this and other stories in the Log Cabin, log on to www.thecabin.net. Send us your news at www.thecabin.net/submit)