LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – Detectives say an erratic driver in the Shoals put law enforcement officers in danger when he hit 2 patrol cars during a high-speed chase.
WHNT News 19 was the only crew on the scene Sunday night in Lauderdale County as the suspect was taken into custody, then taken to the hospital.
Investigators say before the car ended up in a ditch near County Road 6 and Highway 157 in Florence, its driver led Shoals law enforcement along several roads at a high rate of speed.
Deputy Brad Bolton assisted in the pursuit, and says Larry Dale Riley slammed into his car.
“It’s always in the back of our mind how dangerous our job is,” said Deputy Bolton. “However I think our training takes over and we react. We do what we’re trained to do and we make sure at the end of the day we all go home and everybody is safe.”
Then Deputy Bolton says Riley started throwing things out the window, and hit a second deputy.
“He told us he had warrants and he did not want to go to jail, so that was pretty much his motivation for the chase,” said Deputy Bolton.
Deputies clocked Riley at speeds of more than 100 miles per hour near residential areas and along Lauderdale County roads.
Then Deputy Bolton says Riley lost control of the car and landed in a ditch. Investigators say Riley wasn’t wearing a seatbelt and was injured on impact. However Deputy Bolton says Riley was still worried about just one thing.
“At no point in time was he ever remorseful. At no point in time did he ever apologize for any of his actions. He was more concerned about what the charges were going to be,” said Deputy Bolton.
Officials say Riley is charged with eluding police, reckless endangerment, menacing, and criminal mischief, along with countless traffic citations.
The Sheriff’s Department has policies in place to terminate a chase if public safety is put in jeopardy.
Detectives say there were few cars on the roadways during Sunday night’s pursuit.