Attempted traffic stop turned police chase in Mercer Co. ends with injuries

Local - 2/25/2014 12:55 PM by Rebecca Turco


PRINCETON - An attempted traffic stop turned into a police chase with injuries early Tuesday morning in Mercer County, and the driver who was on-the-run from cops is a wanted man. 

Princeton Police Chief J. W. Howell told Newswatch Jerry D. Martin, 31, of Virginia is wanted out of Charlottesville and Staunton.

Howell said the chase started just before 2 a.m. Tuesday, when an officer traveling on Courthouse Road observed a car traveling nearly 20 miles over the speed limit. The officer tried to initiate a traffic stop, but Martin refused to stop and eventually turned onto Old Bluefield Princeton Road. Officers with the Princeton Police Department and the Mercer County Sheriff's Department responded for back-up.

During the pursuit, Martin struck two police cruisers before coming around a sharp curve, losing control and hitting a parked cruiser, according to Howell. The impact shoved both cars 30 to 40 feet off the roadway and the police cruiser struck a utility pole. The officer in that car, E. D. Leftwich, had to be extricated and was airlifted to Roanoke Memorial Hospital. He has since been treated and released.

Martin was transported to Princeton Community Hospital and later airlifted to Roanoke Memorial, according to Howell. Charges will be made pending his condition, which is unknown at this time.


ORIGINAL: 2/25/14, 7:05 a.m.

PRINCETON - Injuries were reported following a car accident in Mercer County early Tuesday morning.

Two cars crashed just before 1:50 a.m. on Route 460 at the intersection of Willowbrook Road near Princeton, according to 911 dispatchers. One person was airlifted to a hospital and there were also transports to Princeton Community Hospital, but dispatchers could not confirm how many were hurt or the extent of the injuries. 


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