Suspect leads state trooper on high-speed chase after HOV violation

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(PHOTO: MGN online)

ARLINGTON COUNTY, Va. — State police say a man reached speeds of up to 100 mph on I-66 in a high-speed chase on Wednesday after a trooper pulled him over for driving in an HOV lane, despite being the only person in his car.

The trooper, Sgt. Szupinka, reports that he noticed a car with one occupant in the HOV lane Wednesday morning. He pulled the car over, only for the driver, John Johnson III, 44, to speed away as the sergeant was approaching him on foot.

Szupinka pursued Johnson, who police say reached speeds up to 100 mph as he fled. Finally, he took exit 73, and Szupinka stopped his pursuit out of fear for the safety of other drivers and pedestrians.

He found Johnson’s vehicle, a Ford Focus, several minutes later near Lee Highway. The keys were still in ignition, and the engine was running, but the suspect was nowhere to be found.

State police established a perimeter and brought out a K9 team, then searched for the suspect on foot. Less than an hour after the chase began, Arlington County Police found Johnson hiding under a car in a parking garage.

Johnson has been charged with eluding police, reckless driving, driving on a suspended license, and the original HOV violation.