BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — A traffic stop initiated by Erie County Sheriff's Office deputies early Friday morning turned into a multi-agency car chase, with the driver facing felony charges and additional charges and violations in two Erie County towns.
Deputies attempted to pull over a vehicle driven by Carl Knight, 31, of Erie, Pennsylvania, just after 2:30 a.m. Friday near the corner of Erie and Cain Roads in Brant. Deputies noticed improper plates on the vehicle. According to the sheriff's office, Knight did not stop, instead continuing into the Town of Evans.
Officers from the Evans Police Department responded to assist and eployed spike strips in the roadway. Three tires on the suspect's vehicle were damaged, but the driver continued onto the New York State Thruway at Exit 57A, driving the wrong way. As the vehicle traveled east in the westbound lanes, officers split up. Some continued to pursue the vehicle, while others moved in front of the car to try to warn oncoming vehicles.
Throughout the duration of the chase, deputies say the vehicle was moving at or below posted speed limits.
The sheriff's office reports Knight exited the Thruway at the Hamburg exit and took Route 5 to Woodlawn State Park. Knight cashed into a Hamburg Police Department vehicle and came to a stop, ending the chase. Police took him into custody.
After securing the driver, officers determined that Knight had been driving a vehicle reported stolen from Erie. They also learned that Knight was wanted on a warrant out of Alleghany County, Pennsylvania for parole violations. Inside the stolen vehicle, deputies found cocaine.
Knight is charged with three felonies, including criminal possession of stolen property for the vehicle, criminal possession of a controlled substance for the cocaine found in the vehicle, and reckless endangerment. He also faces three misdemeanor charges related to the chase, including reckless driving, resisting arrest and obstruction.
Knight also faces 12 traffic violations:
- Unlicensed operation of a vehicle
- Failure to keep right
- Failure to stop at a stop sign
- Running a red light
- Unsafe lane change
- No inspection
- No registration
- No insurance
- Unsafe turn
- Improper netrance/eit from a controlled highway
- Driving on the shoulder of a controlled highway
- Failure to obey traffic device
The Pennsylvania warrant for Knight's arrest is a "nationwide extradition warrant." Knight will be processed by police department in Evans and Hamburg on local charges before being arraigned on charges from the Erie County Sheriff's Office. He will be held pending extradition proceedings at the Erie County Holding Center.