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W.Va. man sentenced in Md. chase

April 07, 1998|By BRENDAN KIRBY

A Martinsburg, W.Va., man was sentenced to two years in prison Monday for leading police on a chase through Washington County last November.

Douglas Craig Tederick, 42, was convicted of fleeing and eluding and driving while revoked in a nonjury trial. Washington County Circuit Judge John H. McDowell sentenced Tederick to a year for each offense.

Tederick also received a one-year concurrent sentence for driving on a suspended license.

The chase began in West Virginia on Nov. 2, 1997, when West Virginia State Police were headed to another call. A state trooper flashed his lights to get around Tederick, who accelerated, police testified.

West Virginia troopers pursued Tederick to the border, where Washington County Sheriff's deputies took up the chase. Tederick's vehicle reached speeds above 80 mph, Deputy John Ralston testified.

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"Your actions are inexcusable," McDowell said during sentencing.

Tederick successfully defended a driving under the influence charge that had been leveled after police discovered an open container of beer in the vehicle. He was never given a Breathalyzer or blood test.

McDowell said it did not matter whether Tederick was drunk or not.

Police ended the chase on Manor Church Road by placing "stop sticks" in Tederick's path.

The devices punctured three tires.

Tederick said he took off because he knew his license was not valid, but he said he never intended to hurt anyone.

"I panicked. I have a disorder," he said. "It just snowballed and kept rolling and rolling. I apologize and I thank God nobody was hurt."

Tederick originally was charged with stealing the van he was driving that night, but Washington County Assistant State's Attorney Joseph Michael said the charge was dropped because authorities could not locate the owner.

Tederick will serve his sentence in a state prison. He will receive credit for the time he has spent in the Washington County Detention Center since his arrest.

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