A Redmond man was arrested early Saturday morning following two eludes in central Oregon that finally ended northwest of Madras after Oregon State Police (OSP) troopers used spike strips to deflate the fleeing pickup's tires.
On March 10, 2006, at about 11:50 p.m., Redmond Police Department attempted to stop a white 1992 Nissan pickup for a speed violation. The driver refused to yield and increased his speed northbound on Highway 97 towards Madras. Once the pickup reached speeds in excess of a 100 mph, Redmond Police Department discontinued their attempt to stop the eluding driver near milepost 118.
OSP Northern Command Center dispatch was informed of the pickup's description and Troopers Jed Rzegocki and John Russo of the OSP Madras office positioned themselves on US Highway 97 to intercept the eluding pickup.
At about 12:03 a.m., Trooper Rzegocki advised that the 1992 Nissan pickup passed him northbound in excess of 100 mph. As the pickup passed milepost 103, Trooper Russo successfully deployed spike strips and deflated 3 tires.
Trooper Rzegocki continued following the pickup as speeds lowered to approximately 50 mph northbound through Madras and west onto Highway 26. Now driving on 3 rims and one tire, the pickup continued towards the Warm Springs Reservation until milepost 113 where the driver pulled over and was taken into custody without incident.
GERALD JAY HANKEL III, age 29, from Redmond, was transported to the Jefferson County Jail where he was lodged for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants, Reckless Driving, Reckless Endangering Another Person, misdemeanor Driving While Suspended, and Criminal Mischief in the Second Degree. Additional charges will be field by Redmond Police Department related to their involvement during the earlier reported incident.
HANKEL was alone in the vehicle. The elude, involving the Oregon State Police, covered approximately 23 miles.
OSP News Release