Suspect caught after car, foot chase

Published 1:39 am Saturday, September 12, 2009

A Knoxville, Tenn., man suspected of striking another vehicle on Hilltop Circle and leaving the scene Tuesday night was caught by Demopolis police officers after a vehicle chase down Arcola Road and a foot pursuit on Pettus Street.

The hit-and-run call came in to the police department Tuesday at 10:56 p.m.

John Richard Chapman, 27, was involved in a vehicle pursuit by Demopolis Police Department Sgt. Daryl Bowden down Arcola Road and back to Pettus Street, where he was pulled over near Hilltop Circle.

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“Sgt. Bowden determined that the driver was intoxicated,” said DPD chief Tommie Reese. “He was placed under arrest for DUI (driving under the influence) and placed into Sgt. Bowden’s vehicle.”

Reese said the handcuffed suspect escaped from the vehicle while Bowden was getting information from Chapman’s vehicle and ran away, falling down in front of Harris Cleaners, sustaining injuries in the fall.

Chapman was taken by ambulance to Bryan W. Whitfield Memorial Hospital, where he stayed for a couple of days.

He has been charged with driving under the influence and escape. Reese said official charges in the hit-and-run have not been filed, but are expected to be filed soon.

A police car responding to the call Tuesday night wound up in a ditch at U.S. Highway 80 and Front Street across from the former Food World parking lot. No injuries were reported in the accident.