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May 30, 2019


A 16-year-old girl faces multiple juvenile detention charges after she allegedly led police on a high-speed chase, crashed, was apprehended, escaped her handcuffs and stole a sheriff’s office vehicle before crashing again, breaking into a home and finally being taken into custody Wednesday night.

Police had been looking for the girl since May 21, when she allegedly “removed her community corrections ankle bracelet and was listed as a runaway,” according to a release from the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office.

Police received a tip Wednesday night that the girl was at a home on North Majestic Way in Syracuse, just south of Lake Wawasee. Officers also reportedly were told she had drugs and a gun.

When officers found the blue Hyundai Santa Fe they were looking for around 7:20 p.m. Wednesday near the home, the girl allegedly drove away quickly, taking off through several yards “at a high rate of speed.” She lost control on a curve in front of the Department of Natural Resources Division of Law Enforcement District 1 headquarters and hit “three wooden pillars, a NIPSCO utility pole and a telephone junction box.”

The Hyundai was later searched, with police allegedly finding methamphetamine, marijuana and paraphernalia.

The 16-year-old was taken into custody and handcuffed in the back of a Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Office patrol car but “was able to twist and manipulate a hand out of her handcuffs.”

With a hand free, she allegedly got into the driver’s seat of the sheriff’s office vehicle, turned it around and sped off west on Hatchery Road.

Now driving the sheriff’s office vehicle, the girl hit a fence and a storage building, according the sheriff’s office release, but the teenager was not done trying to flee police. Near where she crashed this second time, she climbed through the window of a home, took a cellphone and went out through another window.

Officers finally got the teen back into custody south of the house she allegedly burglarized. She was evaluated for injuries and released to deputies.

The girl was taken to South Bend’s Thomas N. Frederick Juvenile Justice Center. She faces juvenile detention charges including two counts of escape, two counts of resisting law enforcement with a vehicle and one count each of auto theft, burglary, theft, possession of meth, possession of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia.