Police chase leads to crash on I-40

February 3, 2010 9:35:48 AM PST
Law enforcement officials said Wednesday that a high speed chase led to a crash on Interstate 40 near Jones Sausage Road.

The Highway Patrol said it all began when a man allegedly stole a pick-up truck on Pender Street in Raleigh.

The vehicle belongs to heating and air conditioning company Service Experts, and was parked at an employee's home.

"He went outside in the morning to start up the vehicle to warm it up, and then went back in the house and by the time he got back out and noticed the vehicle was gone," explained Rob Eichas with Service Experts.

Investigators said they believe the truck was used in burglaries at two stores in Knightdale. Power tools were taken from a Home Depot store and computer equipment from a Wal-Mart on New Bern Avenue.

The truck was equiped with anti-theft equipment that allowed its owners to tell police its location.

Knightdale police spotted it Wednesday morning and gave chase down Interstate 40. Speeds reached 100 miles per hour before the man hit a tractor-trailer and lost control.

"I looked back and seen ladders flying," said truck driver Steve Jewel. "From out of nowhere this truck shot around and hit me from the side."

The man was thrown from the pick-up in the crash. He was taken to WakeMed where his condition is not known.

Jewel was not hurt, but his big rig now needs repairs.

"Wrong place, wrong time," he said.

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