The May 1, two-hour pursuit started around 1:02 a.m. and ended with the arrest of the driver, Eugene Edward Alberty, 50, of North Miami.
MIAMI – A Miami Police report describes a harrowing high-speed pursuit of an erratic driver who put himself, law enforcement and the public in grave danger.
The May 1, two hour pursuit started around 1:02 a.m. and ended with the arrest of the driver, Eugene Edward Alberty, 50, of North Miami, who was cited by Miami Police with eluding and endangering peace officers, operating a vehicle improperly and not reasonably, driving left of center, driving under suspension, bogus decal, and expired tag.
According to Miami Police Corporal Jason Bissell's incident report, Bissell was traveling northbound on US Highway 69 A behind a blue Chevrolet Blazer with Oklahoma tags.
Bissell observed the vehicle driven by Alberty travel left of center a few times just south of East 80 Road and paced the vehicle traveling 70 miles per hour in a posted 45 miles per hour zone.
“I also observed the vehicle make a couple of jerky movements within its lane during that span,” Bissell wrote.
Suspecting the driver may be under the influence, Bissell activated his traffic control lights just south of the intersection of 27 Avenue NE to perform a traffic stop of the vehicle.
“As soon as my traffic control lights came on, the vehicle increased its speed and continued northbound,” Bissell wrote and the officer then activated his siren.
Bissell wrote, "The vehicle continued to swerve back and forth within its lane and reached speeds in excess of 90 mph as it passed two vehicles and met another on the highway at that speed. The pursuit soon reached speeds of 100 mph as the vehicle continued northbound and weaving erratically within its lane. The vehicle continued to elude me as it ran the stop sign and turned eastbound onto US 69. The vehicle went left of center and began driving eastbound in the westbound lane. The vehicle continued driving in the oncoming lane even when the highway divided reaching speeds in excess of 80 mph. I continued pursuing the vehicle while staying in my correct lane. The vehicle reached speeds of almost 100 mph as it continued to travel left of center on numerous occasions.”
Bissell pursued Alberty until he traveled northbound on US 69 into Cherokee County, Kansas, where the pursuit continued.
During Alberty's pursuit in Kansas, he traveled left of center numerous times, ran numerous stop signs, ran at least five roadblocks set up by Kansas law enforcement, met vehicles head-on, turned the vehicle's lights off and on several times, and swerved into the path of a semi tractor-trailer causing it to take the shoulder.
“During the pursuit, at around Highway 166, the driver of the vehicle called the Cherokee County 911 Center and claimed that he was suicidal, and he was going to drive into oncoming traffic,” Bissell wrote in his report. “Officer Danny Morris, who was assisting me, passed the suspect vehicle and began driving in front of him to clear any oncoming traffic. As Officer Morris was doing so, the vehicle would speed up and appeared to try and rear end Officer Morris.”
Alberty's vehicle struck a tire deflation device on Hwy 400 deployed by a Cherokee County Deputy Nate Jones, and then he drove the vehicle into a field near the junction of Hwy.400 and Hwy. 166.
As Bissell pursued the vehicle into the field, and Alberty drove into a dry creek bed with large rocks.
“I exited my vehicle and pointed my handgun at the suspect while giving him verbal commands to put his hands up,” Bissell wrote. “The driver had a knife to his throat and kept reaching with the other hand. On two different occasions, the driver pointed an item at me in a quick manner from his waistline, but luckily, I was able to see that it was a cell phone.”
A Quapaw Marshal broke Alberty's passenger side window and a Kansas Law Enforcement Officer successfully deployed a Taser and Officer Morris was able to then extract Alberty from his vehicle.
Alberty was displaying signs up being under the influence such as sweating heavily, rapid speech and body movements, and constricted pupils, according to Bissell.
Sgt. Ray Vasquez with the Baxter Springs Police Department placed Alberty under arrest and impounded his vehicle, a 2002 Chevrolet Blazer was impounded.
An initial investigation revealed Alberty's Oklahoma and Missouri driver's licenses are suspended and the tag on the vehicle was bogus and belongs to a 1995 Chevrolet pickup.
“Our officers did an excellent job in the pursuit. The suspect’s excessive speed and disregard for the safety of others on the road put the public at great risk,” Miami Police Chief Thomas Anderson said. “Our officers protected the public and made sure the situation was kept as safe as possible. We are grateful the pursuit ended with minimal damage and no injuries. We are grateful for the support of the surrounding law enforcement agencies working as a team to catch the offender.”
“I’m proud of my guys on this one,” Baxter Springs Police Chief said. “I’m happy with the job they did, they too safety precautions and tried to keep it out of the city of Baxter Springs, plus I am also proud of my supervisor on the shift that showed restraint with this individual.”
According to the Cherokee County District Attorney’s office, Alberty was charged in Cherokee County, Kansas with two counts of aggravated assault on an officer, one count of fleeing or eluding an officer, and a fourth count of driving under suspension.