TOM GREEN COUNTY – A high speed chase that began in on Highway 83 Winters Saturday evening, ended when a man drove off a cliff at Crows Nest Creek in Tom Green County, officials with the Runnels County Sheriff's Office reported.
TOM GREEN COUNTY – A high speed chase that began in on Highway 83 Winters Saturday evening, ended when a man drove off a cliff at Crows Nest Creek in Tom Green County, officials with the Runnels County Sheriff’s Office reported.
According to Sheriff Carl Squyres, the report of a reckless driver came in around 6:45 p.m. A deputy spotted the white Chevrolet pickup near Hatchel moving at a high rate of speed at 6:54 p.m.
“At that point he was going 97 miles per hour,” Squyres said.
The chase continued through Ballinger where two Ballinger police officers joined the pursuit. Speeds of between 97 and 110 miles per hour were clocked during the chase.
The vehicle continued through Ballinger down U.S. Highway 67 at speeds upwards of 110.
“He never got into the oncoming lane, but he was weaving in and out of traffic,” Squyres said. “It was definitely a danger to citizens.”
According to witnesses, the driver took the old pavement off of Highway 57 and fled down the old street before running through a fence, belonging to a business.
Then he continued through a pasture and literally shot off a cliff over Crows Nest Creek and was airborne 100 feet in the air before landing nose down and rolling several times, Squyres said.
The driver was able to exit the truck before it burst into flames.
He was found lying next to the truck. The pursuit ended at 7:12 p.m.
The driver was identified as Kevin Wheeler, 29, of Clyde. He was transported to Shannon Medical Center in San Angelo.
Squyres said he was not arrested at the time because he had been hospitalized and “we did not know what his injuries were.”
Squyres said he intends to issue a warrant for his arrest for fleeing to elude, a state jail felony, at a later date.
The law enforcement agencies involved in the incident included the Runnels County Sheriff’s Office, Ballinger Police Office, Miles Volunteer Fire Department, Quail Valley Volunteer Fire Department and the Department of Public Safety (DPS).