Police: Man arrested after a high-speed, multi-county chase
NEPHI, Utah — A 46-year-old man was arrested Friday after leading multiple police agencies on a high-speed chase in a stolen car.
The suspect, Edwin Hyung Cho, 46, was first seen in a stolen silver Dodge SUV at a Flying J parking lot in Nephi at approximately 12:27 p.m, according to arrest documents.
A Utah High Patrol trooper was notified through the license plate reader system that the car was in the town when Nephi police officers found Cho at the gas station.
The Nephi officers attempted to approach the vehicle, but it fled “recklessly” by driving behind a Denny’s, back to the Flying J, and getting on Interstate 15 heading southbound, according to arrest documents.
When Cho got on to I-15, the UHP trooper began to pursue the stolen SUV and tried to clock his speed.
“Radar showed the vehicle’s speed anywhere between 100 to 120 miles per hour,” reads the arrest documents. “Several different times during the pursuit, the vehicle passed on the right-hand side in the emergency lane.”
Because of Cho’s driving and surrounding traffic, the UHP officer stopped his chase on I-15 around mile marker 190.
According to arrest documents, other officers were looking for Cho along with a Utah Department of Public Safety helicopter getting ready to take off.
Shortly after losing sight of Cho, UHP troopers in Sevier County found the stolen car on state Route 50 and began another high-speed pursuit.
Again, pursuing officers had to stop the chase on Interstate 70 as they approached a construction zone with Cho driving recklessly, according to arrest documents.
“The vehicle flipped through the median to avoid the construction zone and attempted to travel back eastbound,” state arrest documents. “The individual saw the Troopers waiting and then took Exit 1 and entered Cove Fort and went through this area at a high rate of speed.”
For a third time, a UHP trooper started to pursue the stolen car as it fled from police.
According to arrest documents, Cho began to slow down enough for the trooper to perform a pit maneuver on him, but Cho was able to get back on the road and continue to flee in the car.
Cho entered I-15 again, where police were able to successfully spike his car near mile marker 156. Cho slowed down and attempted to exit the freeway, but a UHP trooper was able to perform a successful pit maneuver.
UHP shut down the offramp and kept commanding Cho to exit the car, but he refused to obey commands, according to arrest documents.
“(Cho) then barricaded himself in the vehicle and started to cover the driver window and windshield,” state arrest documents.
However, police were able to still see Cho through the windshield and noticed he was smoking a possible controlled substance.
After several hours, UHP got enough units for an arrest team with a K-9 unit and started an operation to remove Cho from the car, according to arrest documents.
“We were able to extract the driver from the vehicle by shooting out the rear window with a less lethal shotgun,” read arrest documents. “(Cho) finally exited the vehicle and was placed under arrest.”
During the arrest, a UHP trooper noticed several glass pipes and multiple pieces of burnt tin foil in the driver’s seat. Cho admitted to police that he was “smoking the rest of what he had before he was going to jail,” according to arrest documents.
Police successfully identified Cho and found an active warrant for his arrest in Salt Lake County for theft and use or possession of drug paraphernalia. He also had an extensive criminal history with controlled substances, according to police.
After being cleared by medical staff on the scene, Cho was transported to a nearby medical center for a blood draw, but medical staff were unable to because of his “IV drug use,” according to arrest documents.
Troopers are now waiting for the results of a urine test as of Friday.
Police booked Cho into the Jaub County Jail on suspicion of:
- three felony charges of failing to respond to an officer’s signal to stop,
- one felony charge of possession of a controlled substance,
- one felony charge of receiving or transferring a stolen vehicle,
- a misdemeanor charge of reckless endangerment,
- a misdemeanor charge of reckless driving,
- a misdemeanor charge of obstructing justice,
- a misdemeanor charge of use or possession of drug paraphernalia,
- a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs,
- and a misdemeanor charge of failure to remain at the scene of an accident with damages,
Cho is also facing infractions for improper passing on the right of a vehicle and crossing over the highway median.
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