FRENCH CREEK – An Upshur County man was arrested Thursday after allegedly fleeing from a police officer in a vehicle and almost colliding with a truck during an incident that reportedly occurred in April 2021.
Joshua D. Casada, 36, of French Creek, was arrested for fleeing with reckless indifference, a felony.
According to the criminal complaint in the Upshur County Magistrate Clerk’s Office filed by investigating officer deputy Cole Bender with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department, on April 16, 2021, Bender was traveling southbound on Route 20 South Road in French Creek following a 2001 black Jeep Cherokee.
The vehicle had a loud exhaust and after running a check on the registration, Bender was informed the plate came back as belonging to a 2014 Kia Forte. Bender initiated a traffic stop at the intersection of Waterloo Road and Route 20 South Road. The vehicle initially stopped, but then allegedly took off, so Bender pursued the vehicle.
During the pursuit, the vehicle allegedly nearly hit an oncoming Ford F-150 traveling from the opposite direction. Bender pursued the vehicle along the Waterloo Road until the vehicle drove into a tree at the beginning of Louis Road. When Bender got out of his vehicle, he reportedly saw the passenger in the road next to the vehicle.
The driver, who was later identified as Casada, allegedly fled on foot. However, Bender stayed with the passenger to render aid until Lt. Marshall Powers, also with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department, arrived on scene. The passenger told Bender the driver was Casada and she had been with him all day.
Bail was set by Upshur County Magistrate Mark Davis at $10,000 cash only, and Casada remained incarcerated in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail as of Friday evening.
The potential penalty for fleeing with reckless indifference is confinement in a state correctional facility for not less than one nor more than five years and a fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $2,000.