Driver in chase, Cridersville crash charged

By Sam Shriver -

CRIDERSVILLE — The driver who led Ohio State High Patrol troopers on a high-speed chase through the area just after Christmas has been charged with felony fleeing, and more charges may be coming.

The patrol released additional information on a chase that ended in the suspect’s vehicle crashing at about 5:15 p.m. Dec. 29 in Cridersville.

According to Sgt. Michael Jordan of the Findlay Post, the driver of the rented 2020 Land Rover was David Roper, 22, of Jackson, Michigan. He and a passenger, Kyle Carson, were taken to Mercy Health-St. Rita’s Medical Center shortly after the crash.

A third passenger, whose name has not been released, ran from the crash. He was last seen leaving the area pulling a large suitcase. The patrol brought in an aircraft to help search for this person, but he escaped.

The events began with the patrol receiving a report of the reckless driving of several vehicles on Interstate 75 near the County Road 99 exit in Findlay. A trooper was able to stop the Land Rover just south of Bluffton, but Roper sped away.

The chase continued to the Allen-Auglaize County line, where authorities called off the pursuit after losing sight of the vehicle.

Roper got off the interstate, taking the National Road exit into Cridersville and drove west on Main Street.

After crossing the railroad tracks at a high rate of speed, the SUV went airborne. Roper lost control of the vehicle, struck a tree and smashed into two parked cars, catching fire. Debris damaged another vehicle and a business.

Roper was originally charged with fleeing, a third-degree felony. A Hancock County Grand Jury is expected to meet soon to consider additional charges against him.

By Sam Shriver

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.

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