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All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in court.
Arkansas State Police Trooper Wingo stopped a Toyota sedan on the Bypass EB at Airport Road last night. He made contact with the driver, discovered that the driver was allegedly drinking whiskey, retrieved the suspect’s driver’s license and started back to his patrol car with the intent to begin a DWI investigation when he saw the driver allegedly throw something out of the passenger window. Trp. Wingo went back to speak with the driver, but the driver allegedly put the car in ‘drive’ and fled from the trooper.
Trp. Wingo told Troop K Dispatch that he was in pursuit and several other troopers headed towards him.
The suspect vehicle exited the Bypass at McLeod and shot up Aviation Plaza. When the trooper got to the end of Aviation Plaza, he saw that the suspect vehicle had crashed head on into an overpass support column underneath the Bypass on Lakeshore Drive. When the trooper pulled up to the crash, he saw the suspect allegedly fleeing on foot, up the very steep concrete embankment. The suspect made it to the top of the embankment, crossed the entire Bypass and fled off into the direction of Village Road.
National Park Rangers came to assist with their K-9 Unit. They tried to catch a track on the suspect, but it is believed that the suspect may have called for a ride or something and got picked up. He was not captured at the scene.
Hot Springs Police also arrived quickly and assisted with the search for the suspect.
Ernie’s Wrecker Service was called to the scene and the vehicle inventory was started by troopers. ASP Shift Supervisor Sergeant Steed and Trooper Summit both arrived to assist. During the course of this inventory, troopers located a baby formula can containing at least 2 big rocks of what field tested positive for cocaine and a lot of cash money. A gun was also located. I believe the gun may have been what the suspect allegedly tossed out of the window up on the Bypass just before he allegedly fled.
The only injury that I am aware of in connection to this incident was when Trooper Summit was cut and bled pretty good for a few seconds. He had a “state police investigative item” (commonly used everyday by law enforcement everywhere) shatter in his hand. The item may have been defective. I’ve never seen that happen before. The injury was very minor.
Ernie’s Wrecker Service took charge of the suspect vehicle and removed it from the scene.
Since Trooper Wingo has the suspect’s driver’s license, I would expect that arrest warrants might be forthcoming. Charges could include: Felony Fleeing, Simultaneous Possession Of Drugs & Firearms, Possession of Cocaine With Intent To Deliver, Reckless Driving, Leaving The Scene Of A Traffic Crash, Littering and Public Intoxication.