Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Pursuit Ends in Arrest in Minersville

An attempted traffic stop in Minersville and high-speed pursuit resulted in the arrest of a Schuylkill County man on Tuesday evening.

According to court papers, the incident began around 5:00pm on Tuesday when police encountered a 2000 Purple and Black Dodge Dakota traveling westbound on North Street, rapidly approaching N Fourth Street in the borough.

The driver caught the attention of law enforcement when he executed a right turn onto Fourth Street without coming to a complete stop. The vehicle accelerated so abruptly during the turn that it caused the tires to lose traction, resulting in a screeching noise.

Police began to follow the vehicle and temporarily lost sight as the driver navigated from Fourth Street onto Jones Street and eventually onto Schaeffer Hill Road. It was at this point that officers noted the driver was driving at an alarmingly high rate of speed, behind Quandel's Concrete property located at 9 Schaeffer Hill Road. 

In response to the situation's escalating danger, lights and sirens were activated in an attempt to signal the driver to pull over. However, despite opportunities to stop, the vehicle continued to evade law enforcement.

The pursuit continued along Schaeffer Hill Road, passing Elm Road and Branch Road. Near the 100 block of Schaeffer Hill Road, 

The driver suddenly slammed on his brakes to make a sharp turn onto a small trail leading to the Reading Anthracite property's ATV trail. At this point, officers proceeded to approach the vehicle on foot, with one officer managing to get close enough to obtain a description of the suspect, noting facial features, clothing, and a baseball cap.

As law enforcement closed in, the driver reversed his vehicle. Simultaneously, officers, fearing for their safety, drew their weapons and issued commands for the driver to exit the vehicle and surrender. However, the driver failed to comply with these commands and, instead, accelerated forward. Just before doing so, an officer managed to get within a few feet of the vehicle and observed details, such as the Pennsylvania license plate.

Due to the challenging terrain and the risk of injury or damage to the patrol vehicle, law enforcement was forced to abandon the pursuit. Fortunately, authorities were able to obtain video footage of the vehicle as it traveled along Fourth Street, capturing its distinctive burgundy and black color, gas cap, rear bumper, rear window stickers, and hood. This evidence led investigators to 24 Cemetery Road, where the vehicle was discovered, showing signs of recent parking and damage from colliding with a tree, along with other unique markings.

The owner of the vehicle, Brett Killian, 27, of Llewellyn, was eventually located, he refused to comply with law enforcement officers and resisted arrest. 

To complicate matters further, he had two large-sized pit bulls with him, creating a challenging and potentially dangerous situation. Mr. Killian refused to relinquish control of the dogs to a family member and began to distance himself from officers. 

In response to this escalating standoff, law enforcement deployed their taser, which led to Killian's arrest.

Ptlm Michael Layton-Herron charged Killian with fleeing or attempting to elude police, resisting arrest, traffic violations, and charges for driving a vehicle without inspection, insurance, or registration.

The charges were filed through Magisterial District Judge Dave Plachko's office.