A Kansas man was arrested in Laramie County on Thursday after allegedly assaulting a man at a Wellington burger joint and leading law enforcement on a high-speed chase and that included a near head-on collision with a police car.
That's according to a post on the Larimer County Sheriff's Office Facebook page.
According to the post, the chase began a little after 4 p.m. when a man flagged down a sheriff's deputy to report that he had been assaulted at a Burger King and Shell gas station in Wellington. The victim said the suspect had been driving a Black Jeep Wrangler. Other deputies soon recognized the vehicle and its driver as matching information put out by the Longmont Police Department about a suspect in an armed robbery and the theft of the Wrangler.
As investigators looked for the man, the sheriff's dispatch got a report about the suspect driving through a construction zone at a high rate of speed and almost hitting a pedestrian. The man then drove over some exposed water pipes before driving into a cornfield. But deputies were not yet pursuing him until they saw the vehicle at East County Road 52 and the Interstate 25 frontage road. They tried to stop the Wrangler, but the man sped off. According to the post
''While fleeing, the suspect swerved toward one unmarked vehicle with emergency lights activated and crossed into oncoming traffic and almost collided head on with a marked patrol vehicle. Both of those deputies had to swerve to avoid being hit.
The pursuit continued northbound onto Interstate 25 as the suspect drove at speeds up to 90 mph and crossed over the median from the interstate to the frontage road. The suspect then drove eastbound on East County Road 64 and had trouble maintaining control of the vehicle at high speeds. All marked patrol vehicles turned off their emergency equipment and stopped pursuing the vehicle near Weld County Road 27. Investigators in unmarked vehicles continued following the suspect as he slowed down to normal speeds."
The suspect then drove north on Highway 85. He appeared to not notice that he was being followed by investigators in unmarked vehicles. Sheriff's deputies, meanwhile, got in touch with the Wyoming Highway Patrol,
and when the jeep entered Wyoming, the troopers deployed road spikes which slowed the vehicle down. The driver was then arrested and identified as 38-year-old Tappan Daniel Smith of Wichita.
Smith was booked into the Laramie County Detention Center on charges of driving under the influence, possession of controlled substances, possession of stolen property, and traffic offenses in Wyoming.
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