Man sends FHP trooper on high-speed chase in Tampa with woman, child in car
An attempted traffic stop ended in a high-speed chase and an arrest of a 31-year-old man in Tampa, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
According to the agency, Raeshad Hopkins was taken into custody Monday night and is now facing multiple felony and misdemeanor charges.
The incident started just before 10 p.m. when a trooper was driving south on the Veterans Expressway, near mile marker 7. He reportedly saw an SUV driving recklessly and speeding across the traffic-free lanes.
When the trooper tried to pull the SUV over, the driver, identified as Hopkins, sped away instead of stopping, FHP reports.
This marked the start of a high-speed chase between the SUV and FHP cruiser.
The SUV fled to West Kennedy Boulevard and made a left turn on North Trask Street, with the cruiser following close behind. But this is when Hopkins started to back up and eventually crashed into the trooper, FHP said in its incident report.
"The rear right side of the SUV struck the front of my patrol car," the trooper wrote in the report. "The SUV started to once again flee."
The 31-year-old purposefully crashed again into the trooper's cruiser before heading back toward the Veterans where the original traffic stop was attempted, FHP said. Eventually, the SUV failed to make a sharp left turn, sending Hopkins into a concrete wall on the right shoulder.
The SUV came to a complete stop, and the 31-year-old was removed from the car and placed under arrest. Inside the car, the trooper found two passengers – a 30-year-old woman and a 5-year-old child.
According to the FHP, the woman asked Hopkins to stop to let her out several times, but he didn't and "imprisoned her against her will."
A large bag on the floor with a "green leafy substance resembling marijuana" was also found.
Hopkins is facing charges, including:
Battery on a law enforcement officer (two counts)
Possession of cannabis with intent to sell, manufacture or deliver
Reckless driving with property damage or personal injury
Fleeing to elude highspeed
Driving with license canceled, suspended or revoked (third offense)