Chase lands driver in hospital

Published 12:04 am Thursday, October 7, 2010

For the second time in less than a week, a man has been injured as the result of a high-speed pursuit with Covington County Sheriff’s deputies.

Chief Deputy David Anderson said the incident occurred at approximately 5:30 p.m. Tuesday when Willie Tolles of Laurel Hill, Fla., allegedly “blew threw” a safety checkpoint at the intersection of Sanders Road and County Road 4 near Wing.

“Tolles sped off when approached by officers,” Anderson said. “Sgt. (Jeff) Daniels attempted to stop the vehicle by activating his lights and sirens; however, (Tolles) slammed on his brakes several times trying to cause an accident.”

Anderson said when Tolles attempted to make a left hand turn onto Rock Hill Road, he lost control of his vehicle and slammed into a dirt embankment, breaking his ankle in the process.

Anderson said emergency personnel had to extricate Tolles from the wreckage and transported him to Andalusia Regional Hospital for treatment.

It is believed that Tolles fled the checkpoint because he had illegal drugs in his possession, Anderson said.

“Sgt. Daniels stated that (Tolles) and his passenger were throwing what appeared to be controlled substances out the window during the chase,” he said.

It is unknown if those items were recovered; however, Tolles was given numerous traffic citations for the incident. Criminal charges could be forthcoming, Anderson said.

Tolles’ passenger, who was not identified, was not charged and was released.

On Saturday, a Florala man was arrested and charged following a pursuit in the same area of Wing. Michael “Red” Thames, who was wanted by Escambia County law enforcement officials, engaged another sheriff’s deputy in a pursuit. The deputy used a “PIT” maneuver to end the pursuit and suffered minor injuries.