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Franklin police engage in ‘dangerous’ chase of theft suspect on I-75

The 30-minute chase saw the suspect weave across a median and go upwards of 80 mph.
Updated: May. 13, 2021 at 10:54 PM EDT
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WARREN COUNTY, Ohio (FOX19) - Franklin police engaged in a half-hour, high-speed interstate chase mid-morning Thursday on reports that a suspect had stolen items from a store.

The chase began around 9 a.m. Police say they tried to stop the vehicle on the interstate after reports of a theft from the Franklin Walmart.

Police say Rolando Caldwell, 39, refused to stop. He fled north on Interstate 75. According to Franklin Police Chief Brian Pacifio, speeds exceeded 80 mph.

From Franklin, Caldwell led officers through Moraine before making his way to Dayton, where he’s from. That’s where most of the chase took place.

“At one point, the vehicle went onto the opposite lane of travel where there was a median separating the two,” Pacifico said. “Then [he] came back over into the proper lane of travel.”

Eventually, Pacifico made the decision to let officers try a “pit maneuver,” where officers use their police cruiser to hit the fleeing vehicle and bring it to a stop.

Said Pacifico, “All pursuits are dangerous no matter what, whether you are slow speed or high speed in the pursuits, and we take all of those into consideration when we decide to put on a maneuver.”

The chase lasted around 30 minutes in total.

Caldwell tried to run from officers afterward, but according to Pacifico, a fence behind the car stopped him from doing so. After a few warnings, Caldwell got on the ground and complied with police.

The cruiser sustained minimal damage.

Caldwell is charged with failure to comply, receiving stolen property and theft. Police say he learned afterward he had previous warrants out of Dayton for abduction, theft and drug charges.

A passenger in the car, Kirsten Watts was taken into custody, after which police discovered a theft warrant for her out of Miamisburg.

Police say the car Caldwell had been driving was reported stolen out of Dayton.

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