Deputy ditched, car-theft suspect flees after chase


Tuesday, a car chase in Maricopa instigated by a report of a reckless driver ended badly for the suspect and a pursuing deputy.

According to the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were dispatched around 2:52 p.m. to the area of Ralston and Farrell roads. Witnesses said a white Dodge Caravan with no visible license plate was driving all over the road, using both lanes of traffic and forcing cars off the road, according to the report.

Within three minutes, deputies spotted the vehicle near West Papago Road and North Ralston. With lights and sirens, they gave chase and watched the van turn east onto Papago. The pursuit took both vehicles north on Brewer Road, east on Peters and Nall, south on White and west on Val Vista.

When Val Vista became a dirt road west of Ralston, the heavy dust from the high-speed chase limited the sight of the pursuing deputy. The vehicle collided with a concrete irrigation canal at low speed, according to PCSO spokesman Jim Knupp, who added the deputy was not injured.

Another deputy vehicle emerged from the dust and took over the chase. The deputy quickly located the vehicle in the 52000 block of West Val Vista Road. It had been driven through a gate and struck a Southwest Gas meter, causing a gas leak, before coming to a rest near a tree in a resident’s front yard.