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Expat wanderer

Chase Ends with Suspect Trying to Drown Police and Police Dog

I loved reading the papers in Kuwait. What criminals could be so incredibly STUPID, I would wonder. (Here is my all time favorite Kuwait story.)

This morning, AdventureMan asked “Have you read the paper? Some guy had a high speed chase, then he tried to drown the policeman AND the policeman’s dog!”

No, I hadn’t read it. It is almost to stupid to be believed. What I do love is that the idiot is named in the Pensacola News Journal story and, of course, that his mother says he couldn’t have done it, LOL.

Chase Ends With Officer Fighting To Save His Life

Gulf Breeze Police Department Sgt. Stef Neff knows things can go bad in just a few seconds in his line of work.

That’s what happened in Gulf Breeze early Saturday morning when a traffic stop ended with Neff fighting for his life with a suspect in Hoffman Bayou.

“There is no lonelier feeling than that,” said Neff, a 15-year veteran who survived the fight without serious injuries. “I didn’t have any way to call anybody else. It was me and him.”

The suspect — Kyle Estes, 21, of Navarre — was eventually captured but it took more than an hour as he struggled in the water with two other officers and a police dog.

Estes remains in Santa Rosa County Jail today under $111,000 bond. He is facing a long list of charges related to Saturday’s fracas:

• Fleeing and eluding law enforcement officers.
• Obstruction of police.
• Aggravated battery.
• Resisting an officer.
• Driving while license is suspended or revoked.
• Hit and run.
• DUI with property damage.

The suspect’s mother hasn’t talked to him since the early morning battle, but she insists he is not violent by nature.

“It was totally out of character for Kyle to get violent like that,” Michelle Estes said today. “It was a very desperate and extreme attempt to get away from the police. I just think he didn’t want to get in trouble.”

The incident began when Gulf Breeze Police Officer Greg Baker tried to stop Estes at about 2 a.m. after seeing him speeding south on the Pensacola Bay bridge at about 95 mph, Neff said.

Baker followed Estes to Chanteclaire Circle, where Estes lost control of his vehicle and hit a cement wall, a mailbox and a tree, Neff said.

Estes jumped out the vehicle and ran. Neff and Gulf Breeze police officer Daylyn Wilson went to help Baker.

As Neff drove on Chanteclaire Circle, Estes ran by. Neff said he jumped out his vehicle, ran between some houses and pursued Estes to Hoffman Bayou.

Estes fell into the bayou from a rock embankment. Neff said Estes pulled him into the water.

“He tried to push me under the water,” Neff said. “He tried to drown me.”

Neff had no way to tell anyone where he was because his radio was disabled after being dunked in the water.

The Pensacola Police Department and Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office dispatched officers to help look for Neff.

Neff said he hit Estes in the head a few times with his flashlight as the two struggled in the water. He said Estes let him go after he hit him and started to swim across the bayou toward Laura Lane.

As Neff was coming out of the water, Wilson arrived. Neff told Wilson to head toward Laura Lane.

At first, Estes couldn’t be found after he swam away.

“He kind of hunkered down in some saw grass,” Neff said. “He just tried to wait us out.”

When Pensacola Police Officer Shawn Thompson made it to the area, he let his dog, Bandit, off his leash to search for Estes.

The dog found Estes hiding in the saw grass. Estes grabbed Bandit.

“Then he tried to drown the dog,” Neff said. “He was pulling the dog out into the bayou, holding him under the water.”

Thompson and Wilson jumped in to save Bandit. Estes started to swim away after taking some hits to the head with a flashlight, Neff said.

It wasn’t long before Estes was spotted under a pier. Neff and Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Judd White went into water and pulled Estes onto the pier.

None of the officers involved in the incident suffered serious injuries.

Estes was taken to Gulf Breeze Hospital, where he was treated for his injuries, and transported to jail.

Bandit was taken to a veterinarian.

“I think he’s doing fine now,” Pensacola Police Chief Chip Simmons said.

This story illustrates why police and fire crews and teachers and emergency room personnel are, to me, everyday heroes. Every day, they never know what might be out there to bite them.

September 28, 2010 - Posted by | Adventure, Bureaucracy, Community, Crime, Humor, Law and Order, Living Conditions, Pensacola, Social Issues, Work Related Issues

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