A Lancaster man is charged with numerous offenses for fleeing police earlier this month in a stolen vehicle – driving across numerous municipalities before being arrested in Strasburg.
Jerell P. Stewart, 30, told police he knew the Chevy Avalanche pickup truck was stolen and that he was driving when police observed more than a dozen traffic violations during the May 24 incident.
Lancaster city police Detective Willard Smith, who has countywide jurisdiction as an auto-theft investigator, charged Stewart with felony counts of receiving stolen property and fleeing police along with numerous lesser driving offenses.
Stewart was arraigned and bail was set at $100,000, which was not posted. He is presumed innocent.
The truck’s owner reported the theft to Manheim Borough police on May 17. The theft information was forwarded to other police, including Detective Smith of the Lancaster County Auto Crime Task Force.
On May 24, Ephrata police came upon the vehicle. A license plate reader alerted the officer to the stolen vehicle on East Fulton Street.
On East Main Street, police attempted to pull over the vehicle, but the driver accelerated north on Ridge Avenue.
The driver – later determined to be Stewart – continued into New Holland and eventually Strasburg where it was located at Candle Lane and Miller Street.
Police did not pursue the vehicle for the entirety of Stewart’s fleeing.
Police determined Stewart was driving on a suspended license.
MEDIA CONTACT: Brett A. Hambright, 717-295-2041; firstname.lastname@example.org; Twitter: @BrettHambright