LOCAL NEWS

Wendover Police Vehicle Damaged During 100+ MPH Chase

Nov 8, 2019, 10:42 PM | Updated: 10:51 pm

WENDOVER, Utah — A Wendover police officer used his patrol car to ram and eventually stop another vehicle that was clocked at over 100 mph on Interstate 80.

Officer Nic Francis received the call from dispatch Friday morning and was told to head to I-80 and deploy spike strips to stop the speeding car.

“They were saying that a trooper had a stolen vehicle he was chasing, and they were heading towards Wendover,” Francis said. “In two different locations, they got him at over 103 miles an hour.”

As the speeding car approached, Francis laid out the spike strip and hid behind a jersey barrier for safety.

One side of the car ran over the strip, causing the tire to go flat — but the driver kept going.

He got off the Wendover exit and headed into town.

“Just from what was being called out by the troopers, I knew he was going towards a residential (area) and a school. A head start school,” Francis said.

Francis knew he had to stop him — and fast.

“My main goal is to protect the innocent people,” he said.

So, Francis rammed the car straight on.

Other law enforcement agencies also trapped the speeding car and a Utah Highway Patrol car was also damaged in the efforts.

However, the driver eventually stopped and couldn’t go any further.

“Ultimately we did what we were supposed to do and stopped the vehicle,” he said. “There were a few choice words. Not proud of it, but at the same time, the adrenaline is going. And you don’t know what he has inside that car.”

The driver, 28-year old Shawn Michael Woody, of Kearns, was arrested and booked on charges of possession of stolen property, reckless driving and assault on a police officer.

His passenger, 27-year old Nada Leigh Wlodarczyk was also arrested.

“Officer Francis did a phenomenal job,” said Wendover Police Chief Ken Quirk. “Without his actions, who knows how this would have ended because, at one point, the vehicle was driving on the wrong side of the freeway. He could have easily saved lives.”

Francis is just happy they stopped the guy, even if it meant he was possibly going to get hurt himself.

“It’s part of the job,” he said. “There are risks every day. But, that’s why we love doing what we do. We get to help people and keep them safe.”

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Wendover Police Vehicle Damaged During 100+ MPH Chase