DPS Helicopter Crew Helps Stop, Detain 2 Men After I-35 Chase

MT CALM (March 21, 2014) Two men were in custody Friday in Hill County after a high-speed chase that involved several police agencies and a Department of Public Safety helicopter, whose crew ultimately helped to stop and detain the pair.

Neil A. Martin, 51, of Hazard, Ky., and his passenger, Ale R. Keith, 40, of Vicco, Ky., are both fugitives who are named in theft warrants from all over the U.S., DPS trooper D.L. Wilson said Friday.

The chase started just after 5:45 p.m. Thursday in Bellmead after police responded to a report of a theft at the Walmart store at Interstate 35 and Loop 340.

Store security officers confronted the two men, who threw down the times they were taking and fled, Wilson said.

As officers arrived, the two men sped off in a black Chrysler 200, got on the interstate and headed north with police in pursuit.

The chase reached speeds as high as 120 miles per hour as the fleeing driver weaved in and out of northbound traffic before pulling off the highway at the Tokio Road exit, authorities said.

Bellmead officers lost sight of the vehicle and broke off the chase, but DPS troopers continued the pursuit as the men used back roads to cut across to U.S. Highway 31 and headed northeast.

The helicopter crew was able to spot the fleeing vehicle and directed ground units.

Just after 6 p.m. a DPS patrol unit was able to pull the speeding driver over at Highway 31 and Hill County Road 3272, just east of Mt. Calm, but he had no backup, a communications officer said.

The pilot of the DPS helicopter that was following the chase from the air landed on the highway and the other officer aboard jumped out and helped hold the men at gunpoint until more units arrived, authorities said.

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