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Luzerne driver leads police on high speed chase

Published March 13. 2014 06:42AM

A Luzerne County driver is facing multiple charges after leading police on a high-speed chase along several Schuylkill County roads. State police at Frackville said the incident began just before 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Troopers were notified by state police at the Schuylkill Haven barracks to be on the lookout for a green Buick sedan with state registration being occupied by two white males, reported to be involved in a retail theft incident at Kohl's Department store in the Fairlane Village Mall in Norwegian Township.

Frackville troopers set up positions along Interstate 81 northbound in an attempt to locate the suspect vehicle. The suspect vehicle was spotted traveling northbound south of the Route 54 exit in Mahanoy Township.

The trooper, in a marked cruiser, began to follow the vehicle. The driver immediately exited the interstate at the Mahanoy City exit and went eastbound on Route 54.

The trooper attempted to stop the suspect vehicle by activating his emergency lights and siren but the driver refused to stop.

The driver increased the speed traveling eastbound on Route 54. Another trooper set up stop sticks in front of the suspect vehicle but the driver managed to drive around them continuing eastbound then turning onto Elm Avenue in Ryan Township.

The driver continued north on Elm then turned onto Forest St, then right onto Maple St. He then turned east on Lakewood Avenue before returning to Elm St. He traveled on Elm, then made a right run back onto Route 54.

He then fled westbound. Another trooper and Mahanoy Township police deployed stop sticks on 54. The driver drove over the sticks but they failed to deflate the tires on his car.

The pursuit continued west on 54 into Mahanoy City where he turned right onto Route 339. He traveled onto 339 and lost control of his car while negotiating a left curve. The vehicle went onto the berm and struck an embankment before rolling over onto his left side.

The driver and a passenger were then arrested. The driver was identified as Brian David Shafer, 43, of Hazleton. He was injured and transported to the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Salisbury Township. The passenger was not identified by troopers.

The investigation revealed that Shafer had an active felony warrant for his arrest issued to state police at the Hazleton barracks. The vehicle was impounded.

Shafer is facing fleeing and eluding charge plus various motor vehicle code violations.

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