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Semi driver dead after chase with Livingston County deputies

Posted at 11:01 PM, May 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-28 20:52:24-04

LIVINGSTON COUNTY, N.Y. (WKBW) — A tractor trailer driver is dead after firing multiple shots at deputies during a pursuit in Livingston County.

The Sheriff says it was around 8:30 p.m. Wednesday when a LeRoy police officer pulled the truck driver over on Route 5 for speeding. Officers say the driver, who police have identified as 58 year-old Joshua Blessed aka Sergeia Jourev then sped off. Officers had to jump off from the side of the truck.

The truck then headed west to Batavia, made a U-turn and headed back east, eventually ending up on Route 20A in Geneseo.

Cecilia Watters says she was heading to work when she received a text message from her husband, telling her there was a high-speed chase happening with a semi.

"My husband said 'hey he just shot at the police. He has a gun,'" she told 13 WHAM. "I saw the lights, I heard the sirens and I thought oh no, what's going to happen next."

A video posted on Facebook, and shared with 7 Eyewitness News, shows a portion of the chase:

The Livingston County Sheriff says officers had to clear roads ahead of the truck so no one would get hurt. Police say Blessed fired several rounds at officers during the chase.

"How close were our deputies? Very close," said Livingston County Sheriff Thomas Dougherty. "I was in front of the stack at that country club and I radioed to the country club behind because this is where he started shooting. And the car took a shot right next to the deputy so he was purposefully trying to hurt cops tonight. And ultimately, this is how it ended."

Eventually, sheriff's deputies shot and killed the truck driver.

The sheriff says no officers or civilians were hurt in the chase and the shooting.

Police say it appears Blessed had traveled from Harrisonburg, VA to Batavia to pick up dairy products. Authorities say he was a truck driver for Yurman Express LLC.

The incident is still under investigation.