A Springfield man is facing multiple traffic violations and a criminal charge after he allegedly led deputies on a short chase through town over the weekend.
Patrick Brandon Coley, 22, pleaded not guilty to the charges in Clark County Municipal Court on Monday morning.
According to court documents, Coley failed to yield while turning left onto Spring Street from Selma Road on Friday. During that turn, a truck nearly hit him.
It was at that point that deputies tried to pull Coley over — but he took off.
Deputies say Coley ran two red lights while heading north on Spring Street and was weaving in and out of traffic.
Clark County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Mark Lane said the chase lasted for about a minute before he called it off.
“At that point, it wasn’t worth the safety of our citizens including myself and the driver to pursue him any longer,” Lane said.
But Lane said it wasn’t long before deputies found the car that Coley was driving. About two minutes later, people flagged down deputies for a car that crashed into a trailer hauling gravel near Cassilly Street.
Witnesses said they saw Coley bail out of the car and take off running.
Deputies later found Coley in an alley near where the car was found.
Lane said the car that Coley was driving wasn’t even his — it was a rental.
In body camera footage of the incident obtained by the Springfield News-Sun, Coley tells deputies that he fled from them because he was scared.
“I freaked out, man. I’m not going to lie to you. I was scared. I’m not going to lie you. I really was scared,” Coley says in the video. “I just got anxiety. I got scared.”
Lane said the sheriff’s office believes there was more to it than that, but didn’t go into specifics.
“We would question him why he continued to run and drive that recklessly and endanger people’s safety,” Lane said. “A simple traffic violation, which most likely would’ve been a warning for him failing to yield or a traffic ticket has now turned into multiple traffic tickets and a criminal charge.”
Coley was charged with failure to comply with the order of a police officer, reckless operation of a vehicle and driving without a valid driver’s license.