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Chase reaches 107 mph

March 08, 2000|By JULIE E. GREENE

An 8-mile high-speed chase following what police called a drag race early Sunday reached speeds of up to 107 mph, according to police and court records.

Washington County Sheriff's Deputy D.T. Izat said he saw a white sports sedan and a black 1999 Dodge Neon drag racing westbound on Dual Highway at 1:17 a.m., according to police and records in Washington County District Court.

After both cars failed to yield when Izat activated his lights and siren, Izat began pursuing them on Dual Highway, court records state.

The pursuit reached 107 mph in a posted 45 mph zone near Edgewood Drive, while both suspect cars were changing lanes abruptly and passing vehicles at a high rate of speed, court records said.

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Izat continued to pursue the Dodge Neon when it turned onto eastbound Mount Aetna Road where the Neon ran a red light at Robinwood Drive, court records state.

The pursuit reached speeds of 97 mph in a 35 mph zone on Mount Aetna Road, court records state.

Just west of White Hall Road the Neon passed another vehicle in a no-passing zone, continuing to head east in the westbound lane, records state.

The Neon ran a stop sign near White Hall Road and remained eastbound in the westbound lane when Izat lost sight of the Neon as it rounded a bend in the road, court records state.

Izat said he found the Neon stopped under a lamp post in the driveway at 20833 Mount Aetna Road, at which point the driver was arrested.

William Gordon Wenk, 20, of Inwood, W.Va., was charged with reckless driving, spinning wheels, driving in a speed contest, failure to stop at a red light, passing in a no-passing zone, failure to stop at a stop sign, failure to drive right of center, fleeing and eluding, and two counts of exceeding the maximum posted speed limit, police said.

Police said the other car in the drag race eluded them.

A 14-year-old female passenger in the Neon was released to a family member, police said.

Wenk was released on his own recognizance Sunday, police said.

The investigating officer was working the midnight shift Tuesday and could not be reached for further information.

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