BUCKHANNON – A Tucker County man was arrested after allegedly leading law enforcement on a tri-county chase Sunday night that eventually ended in Upshur County.
Nicholas Poe, 21, of Hambleton W.Va., was arrested Sunday for fleeing in a vehicle with reckless indifference to public safety, a felony, according to the criminal complaint in the Upshur County Magistrate Clerk’s Office filed by investigating officer Sr. Trooper Cody C. Mayle with the Philippi detachment of the West Virginia State Police.
The file says on Sunday Nov. 18 at approximately 10:22 p.m., Mayle was contacted by Barbour County E911 Communication Center and advised of an active pursuit traveling south on U.S. Route 119 from Taylor County into Barbour County.
Mayle responded and decided to wait for the vehicle in question in his cruiser in the northbound lane of U.S. Route 119. Soon after, Mayle saw a black pick-up truck being driven by a male later identified as Poe traveling south on Route 119. The driver of the pick-up truck allegedly failing to yield to a Taylor County Deputy who had his emergency lights on and sirens activated, the file says.
Mayle reportedly saw the truck traveling left of center into the northbound lane of Route 119 while heading “at” his police cruiser. The file says Mayle had to put his vehicle in reverse and exit the northbound lane into a parking lot to avoid his cruiser being struck by Mayle’s truck.
Mayle then turned around and began pursuing the vehicle, catching up to it on Route U.S. 119. The trooper then attempted to stop the vehicle, which reportedly failed to yield and increased its speed to 80 mph in a 55-mph zone.
“[I] witnessed the suspect vehicle enter a blind righthand turn in the northbound lane while traveling southbound,” Mayle wrote in his report. “The vehicle continued to flee south on U.S. 119. The vehicle made a right-hand turn onto John Street and traveled south onto Cherry Hill Road, continuously going left of center and almost striking several vehicles.”
At one point, the driver, Poe, was driving on several roads in Philippi at a speed of about 60 mph in a 25-mph-zone.
Poe eventually turned back onto U.S. Route 119 and allegedly continued driving into Upshur County, increasing his speed and still failing to yield to emergency lights and sirens that had been activated on Mayle’s cruiser, the complaint states.
Eventually, Mayle witnessed the truck intentionally exit the southern roadway edge of Route 119, just past the intersection of Garyln Loop and Route 119 in Upshur County. According to the report, Poe exited the vehicle and allegedly began to flee on foot into the woods where Mayle, along with Philippi Police Department Patrolman C. Curkendol, were finally able to apprehend him and take him into custody without further incident, the file says.
Poe was charged with one count of fleeing with reckless indifference. Bail was set at $30,000 cash or surety by Upshur County Magistrate Kay Hurst.
If convicted of fleeing in a vehicle with reckless indifference, Poe faces a fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $2,000 and imprisonment in the state penitentiary for one to five years.