MANSFIELD, Ohio — A pursuit of a stolen vehicle Sunday led to a long police chase, a standof and two more vehicles being stolen, including a patrol car, finally ending with the suspect in custody in Richland County, authorities say.
Police fired shots at the suspect during a standoff in which officers earlier heard what sounded like a gunshot, according to the State Highway Patrol. It’s unclear if the suspect was wounded by gunfire.
The ordeal began just after 1 p.m. when troopers attempted to stop a suspected stolen vehicle on Interstate 71 in Richland County, according to a new release from the patrol. The vehicle reportedly started driving recklessly and refused to stop.
A chase of the vehicle continued onto U.S. 30 east, then onto Ohio 309 and several other roads, the patrol says. The stolen vehicle hit several other vehicles during the pursuit and eventually was unable to continue driving, ending up disabled in the yard of a home on Millsboro Road.
The patrol says troopers, Richland County Sheriff’s deputies and officers from the Ontario Police Department surrounded the car but the driver, identified as Jeremy Reynolds, 31, of Mount Gilead, Ohio, refused to get out of the vehicle. After about 10 minutes, a female passenger in the vehicle was heard screaming and a suspected gunshot was heard.
The standoff continued for another 30 minutes when the vehicle, which was smoking heavily, caught fire. Reynolds and the female passenger got out the car and managed to an OHP vehicle as law-enforcement fired shots. The duo was able to drive off in the patrol car with the overhead lights activated.
The stolen patrol car eventually ended up going east on U.S. 30. Reynolds is accused of pulling the patrol car over on U.S. 30 and carjacking a minivan, forcing the van’s driver and passenger out and leaving them on the side of the road. Reynolds also left behind his female passenger, according to the patrol.
Troopers were able to stop the minivan on Ohio 511, making intentional contact with the vehicle, and Reynolds was arrested. The patrol did not say whether a firearm was recovered.
Reynolds and the female passenger were treated at a hospital for non-life-threatening injuries, the patrol says. The driver of the minivan was treated at a hospital for minor injuries. No law-enforcement officers were injured.
Reynolds is being held in the Richland County Jail. The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation will investigate the shots fired by officers.
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