Two people were taken to the hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening after a police chase through Independence ended in a five-vehicle crash near Noland Road and Lynn Court on Wednesday afternoon.
The crash occurred as a fleeing carjacking suspect drove on the wrong side of the road and struck four other vehicles, said Officer Jack Taylor, spokesman for the Independence Police Department. Two other people had minor injuries in the crash, but were not taken to the hospital for medical evaluation.
The police chase began shortly after officers received a report around 2 p.m. from a carjacking victim saying his Ford F-350 had been stolen at gunpoint. Fifteen minutes later, police spotted a pickup truck matching the description near Noland Road and Gudgell Avenue, roughly two miles north of the crash site.
Officers attempted to pull the driver over, Taylor said. Police then followed the pickup truck south on Noland Road until the collision at Lynn Court. The suspect, whose identity is being withheld by police, allegedly fled the crash site on foot and was arrested shortly after.
Experts have said police pursuits are dangerous. In recent years, the Independence Police Department has invested in a tracking system called StarChase, which is fitted on some of its patrol cars. The system deploys an object with GPS technology that attaches itself to a vehicle being chased, allowing officers to disengage.
Taylor said the StarChase marker had been deployed on the pickup during Wednesday’s chase, and officers were preparing to end the pursuit moments before the crash.
Independence police were still on scene towing cars from the area around 3:30 p.m. Police expected to reopen the road later in the afternoon.