NC 100 mph chase ends when fugitive crashes at raised drawbridge, deputies say

Pasquotank River Drawbridge, which just opened earlier in 2015, in the open position in a file photo from Modjeski and Masters
Pasquotank River Drawbridge, which just opened earlier in 2015, in the open position in a file photo from Modjeski and Masters

ELIZABETH CITY, N.C. (WNCN) — A 100 mph chase for a fugitive in North Carolina ended abruptly when the man’s SUV was stopped by a raised drawbridge near the coast early Wednesday morning, deputies say.

When the suspect — who had taken his mom’s SUV — encountered the drawbridge, he decided to shift the Ford Explorer into reverse and smashed into a deputy’s cruiser, the Camden County Sheriff’s Office said.

The driver, Robert Kilpatrick Beasley III, then tried to get away by making a U-turn, but crashed into the newly built Pasquotank River Drawbridge and was caught, deputies say.

Pasquotank River Drawbridge, which just opened earlier in 2015, in a file photo from Modjeski and Masters
Pasquotank River Drawbridge, which just opened earlier in 2015, in a file photo from Modjeski and Masters

The incident began at approximately 2:39 a.m.  when Camden County deputies responded to a light gray 2004 Explorer that was taken without permission from the suspect’s mother from the Walnut Island area of Currituck County, according to deputies.

Camden Deputies found the Ford Explorer in Camden County and pulled over the SUV and the driver on US 158 near Belcross.

“When the driver, Robert Kilpatrick Beasley III, was made aware he was being detained, he sped off in the suspect vehicle and headed towards Elizabeth City on U.S. 158,” deputies said in a press release.

“Camden Deputies were in pursuit of the suspect vehicle, reaching speeds up to 100 mph through Camden,” deputies added.

As the man approached the Camden/Elizabeth City drawbridge, the bridge was closed and the gates were down and the suspect vehicle came to a stop.

“The suspect driver then put his vehicle in reverse crashing into a Camden patrol car attempting to elude,” deputies say.

That Camden patrol vehicle sustained an estimated at least $4,000 in damage to the front end.

The suspect made a U-turn on the bridge and then crashed into the side of the bridge where Beasley was then taken into custody, according to deputies.

Beasley was then taken to Sentara Albemarle Hospital and later transported to Norfolk General Hospital by Nightingale Air ambulance for head injuries from the wreck.

Upon his release from the hospital he was placed in custody by Norfolk Police.

Beasley is now charged with a fugitive warrant in Norfolk, Va., and awaits extradition to North Carolina for Felony Speed to elude arrest and Injury to Personal Property charges issued by Camden County Sheriff’s Office and potential charges from Currituck County Sheriff’s Office.

The N.C. State Highway Patrol investigated the vehicle wreck.

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