July 2, 2016

Partly cloudy

High-speed chase ends in Westfield

MANSFIELD — A Cleveland man is in jail after he led state troopers on a 30-minute chase through four counties that reached speeds of up to 100 mph.

A news release from the Ohio Highway Patrol said Jerry L. Key, 51, was seen driving a stolen 1992 Chevrolet S-10 pickup on U.S. Route 30 in Richland County.

The patrol received a report from the Wyandot County Sheriff’s Office at 8:48 a.m. Wednesday about a stolen pickup and troopers pulled Key over on the entrance ramp to Interstate 71 northbound at 9:11 a.m. Key immediately fled, leading troopers on a chase through Ashland and Wayne counties and into Medina County, the release said.

Troopers used “stop sticks,” chains with spikes intended to puncture the tires, once each in Ashland and Wayne counties and twice in Medina County before bringing the truck to a stop on I-71 just north of U.S. Route 224 in Westfield Township.

Lt. Chad Enderby, commander of the patrol’s Richland post, said Key was able to avoid the stop sticks three times because they only are designed to cross one lane of traffic and troopers have to be wary of other vehicles on the road.

“It takes a bit of skill in knowing when to deploy them and getting someone to run over them on a three-lane highway,” he said.

Once the truck stopped, Key tired to flee on foot, crossing the southbound lanes of the interstate before he was caught and arrested, the release said.

Speeds reached 100 mph during the chase, Enderby said.

Enderby said Key was taken to the Richland County Jail and faces charges of receiving stolen property, fleeing and eluding and several traffic violations.

Contact reporter Dan Pompili at (330) 721-4012 or dpompili@medina-gazette.com.