A high-speed chase that involved officers from three Midlands counties ended when the vehicle’s manufacturer electronically disabled the car.
Deputies were notified just before midnight Monday that a car stolen in an armed carjacking in Charlotte was traveling rural roads into the Peak area of Newberry County and crossing into Richland County, according to Newberry County Sheriff Lee Foster. Deputies from Newberry, Richland and Lexington counties pursued the Chevrolet Impala toward Chapin.
When officers tried to stop the vehicle, the suspect took off toward Newberry County, reaching speeds of more than 100 mph, Foster said.
The car was equipped with OnStar, a subscription-based communications service provided by General Motors that provides vehicle users with navigation, roadside assistance and the tracking of stolen vehicles.
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Newberry County dispatchers were communicating with OnStar representatives throughout the chase, and it was decided to attempt “a controlled stop” of the stolen car with OnStar’s help on U.S. 76 near Prosperity, Foster said. “They (OnStar) basically slow the vehicle down to take it out of the realm of high speed,” he said.
Officers were in place when the vehicle was electronically disabled, and the driver, 32-year-old Martell Reese Kennedy, was taken into custody without incident.
Kennedy, of the 5000 block of Farrow Road in Columbia, was charged with failure to stop for law enforcement, possession of a stolen vehicle and driving under suspension, according to the sheriff’s office. He will be extradited to North Carolina later to face charges there.
“A coordinated effort between law enforcement agencies in three counties, another state and an off-site technology company led to the capture of a dangerous person that was involved in an armed crime,” Foster said. “Our 911 center worked flawlessly in coordinating communication between OnStar and several law enforcement agencies.”