BUCKHANNON – An Upshur County man was arrested last week after allegedly fleeing at a high rate of speed from an officer who reportedly knew he did not possess a valid driver’s license.
David Blagg, 28, of Tallmansville, was arrested for fleeing with reckless indifference, a felony.
According to the criminal complaint in the Upshur County Magistrate Clerk’s Office filed by Upshur County Sheriff’s Deputy Cpl. Tyler Gordon, on Thursday, Aug. 17, Gordon observed Blagg operating a gold Chevrolet sedan bearing neither a registration plate nor a West Virginia Motor Vehicle Inspection sticker on the Alton Road in French Creek.
Gordon knew Blagg from previous law enforcement encounters, and that Blagg’s driver’s license was revoked for driving under the influence, the police report says.
As Blagg passed Gordon in his marked police cruiser, Blagg allegedly accelerated rapidly and began to flee, but Gordon caught up to Blagg and activated his emergency lights and sirens.
Blagg allegedly continued to flee at speeds exceeding 80 miles per hour on the Alton Road, a one-lane winding country road where 20 mph advisory speed signs are posted in numerous locations.
Blagg recklessly turned right onto Grand Camp Road and allegedly almost collided with a UPS delivery truck. Nevertheless, he continued to flee at speeds exceeding 45 miles per hour, even going “air-borne at a blind crest in the roadway at the Grand Camp / Phillips Ridge Road intersection,” Gordon wrote in the complaint.
According to the report, Blagg then drove through a small field and fled on foot. Upshur County Sheriff’s Deputy Tyler Chidester and his partner, K-9 Officer Rico arrived on scene and tracked the defendant to a residence on Grand Camp Road. The owner of that residence consented to a search of the residence, at which time Blagg was taken into custody.
Bail was set at $20,000 cash or surety.
The penalty for a conviction of fleeing with reckless indifference is a fine of not less than $1,000 and not more than $2,000 and imprisonment in a state penitentiary for one to five years.