Cab driver speaks out about giving ride to drug suspect on the run

By Kimberly Holmes – bio | email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19)  - The search is still on for the drug suspect who managed to elude the Northern Kentucky Drug Strikeforce, Newport and Cincinnati police when he ducked into the Carew Tower on Thursday afternoon.

According to the Cincinnati Police Incident Report, the suspect was driven away from the scene when he hopped into cab. Only Fox 19 spoke with that cabbie on Friday.

The cab driver said he's afraid for his life and his livelihood so he did not want to speak with us on camera, but off camera, he helped FOX 19 recreate the scene.

The cab driver said the suspect waved him down off 5th street. He said the suspect didn't have a coat on and was sweating. The cab driver said the suspect wanted to go to Bond Hill.

The cab driver said he felt something wasn't right so he asked the suspect what was going on. The cabbie said the suspect pulled out a wad of money and told him, "he'd get paid."

The cabbie tells Fox 19 that the suspect wanted to be dropped off at Berkely and Reading Road, but the Cincinnati Police Incident Report said a police car was there at the time. The cab driver said the suspect then told him to keep driving.

The cabbie said the suspect then paid for his fare which was about $18.60. The cab driver said  the suspect handed him a $20 bill and told him to keep the change.

The cab driver said the suspect hopped out of his car at Avonlea and Reading and started running north. The incident report said the suspect was possibly last seen at a Quick Stop at California and Reading Road.

The cab driver said it all started to click after he turned on the radio a few minutes later. The cab driver said that's when he heard that police were looking for a man who fit the same description as his last customer.

It all started Thursday afternoon, after officers with the Northern Kentucky Drug Strike Task Force and Newport police tried to arrest three drug trafficking suspects at the Travelodge in Newport. We're told the suspects jumped into a vehicle and led police on a chase into Cincinnati.

The suspects fled over the Central Bridge into Cincinnati, then got out of their car in the 400 block of Walnut Street. Police arrested one of the three suspects in the vehicle. The second passenger in the vehicle was not arrested, but a third suspect ran into the Carew Tower, and police have not yet found him.

A passenger, 24-year-old Kevin Jett was arrested by Cincinnati Police after a warrant was issued and is currently being held at the Hamilton County Justice Center pending extradition to Kentucky.

Jett is charged with Trafficking in Controlled Substance (Heroin). Jett was convicted of trafficking in heroin in Hamilton County  in 2009. He could face ten years in prison if convicted.

The suspect on the run is driver of the vehicle. He's described as a young black male between the ages of 20-25- years old who stands at five feet ten inches and weighs about 180 pounds. The suspect was wearing blue jeans and a white knit thermal long-sleeved shirt.

Anyone with information is asked to call  the NKDSF at 859-525-NARC(6272) or Crimestoppers at 513-352-3040.

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