Zebulon police said officers clocked 26-year-old John Michael Hyatt going 106 mph around 1 a.m. and tried to get him to pull over. When he did not stop, the chase ensued.
Officers followed Hyatt west to Hwy 264 and 97, then to I-440.
"In that sort of situation, an officer has to kind of weigh out, 'Do I continue to chase this person or do I let them go?' And the officer in this position said, 'The guy's already driving 106 miles an hour, driving recklessly and if we let this person go, what's going to happen down the road,'" Zebulon Police Department Chief Timothy Hayworth said.
Police said after Hyatt turned onto New Bern Avenue, he went over a guardrail and down an embankment near Milburnie Road.
Authorities said Hyatt, a staff sergeant stationed at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, is expected to be okay.
They also said a Zebulon police officer was hospitalized with minor injuries. His patrol car and a Wake County Sheriff's Office vehicle were damaged in the chase.
An investigation is ongoing at this time. Hyatt has been charged with DWI and damage to property, among other charges.