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Wanted man is caught in Kentucky

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By Natasha LaFayette

A chase of a wanted man ended without an arrest when the culprit fled on foot in July.

But the luck of Charles Robert Smith, 38, of Williamsburg, KY., ran out. He was apprehended in Pulaski County, Ky on Dec. 17 and transferred to Campbell County to face multiple charges acquired during his flee from police.

Smith was allegedly wanted for theft in July. When his silver Ford Explorer was observed driving in Jellico in July, Detective J.J. Hatmaker and Police Chief Chris Anderson initiated a stop.

The traffic stop lasted only moments as Smith exited the vehicle with a gun in his hand and then quickly got back in his car and fled, records indicate.

“Smith exited the vehicle with his right hand on the seat and his back to Hatmaker,” said Anderson. “Upon my arrival, he turned and looked and in his right hand was a black handgun.”

Jellico Police followed Smith through the Black Oak community along Highway 25W into Kentucky.

While in pursuit, Anderson said he contacted Kentucky State Police since the chase had crossed the state line.

Near Lot Mud Creek, Smith reportedly came to a stop in the road and put the vehicle into reverse. Hatmaker was behind the vehicle and began slowing from the close to 70 mile per hour speed he was traveling.

The Explorer had a trailer hitch on the back and Smith allegedly continued to back his vehicle into the police cruiser, said Anderson.

The crash caused significant damage and disabled the police cruiser. Hatmaker joined Anderson’s vehicle and continued the chase.

Jellico Police Capt. Jeff Partin also joined the chase. The two police cars were used multiple times to block the road in which Smith was traveling.

According to Anderson, Smith drove in the ditch lines along the road, nearly hitting pedestrians and oncoming traffic.

“At one point he turned the vehicle around and attempted to run over the car I was driving,” said Anderson about the chase.

Smith eventually left the road, ending the 10-mile chase, by driving into a wooded cemetery area.

The vehicle was found but Smith had fled on foot, said Anderson.

Kentucky State Police and Williamsburg Police Department later arrived, bringing the number of police cars at the scene to over 25.

Canines, helicopters and many police officers scoured the area and did not find Smith, said Anderson.

Smith is charged with felony evading arrest, reckless endangerment, failure to tield emergency vehicles, unlawful carrying or possession of a weapon, resist stop, frisk, halt, search and theft of property under $500.

The original theft charges stemmed from an alleged theft of tools taken from a Jellico motel.

Smith was held with a $7,500 bond. He was scheduled to appear in court for the charges on Tuesday.