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Scottdale man faces drug, DUI charges after high-speed chase

| Saturday, March 1, 2014, 1:12 p.m.

A high-speed chase and a mouthful of suspected crack cocaine will result in numerous charges and traffic citations for a Scottdale man.

Late Friday night Jodie Shane Howell, 40, allegedly fled northbound on state Route 119 after Pennsylvania State Police Cpl. Richard Quinn tried to stop the vehicle he was driving around 10:40 p.m. by the BP gas station in Connellsville, according to a police report.

Howell continued driving despite Quinn's use of emergency lights and sirens, police said. Howell began travelling northbound in the southbound lanes from South Ninth Street in Connellsville to the area of Marion Motors in Bullskin Township, leading Quinn on a pursuit.

Police said Howell returned to the northbound lanes, and as he neared the intersection of state Route 119 and state Route 982, another police car tried to stop him. Howell moved back into the southbound lanes, driving north.

Howell's speed was clocked at over 100 miles per hour, and he almost struck several oncoming vehicles, police said.

Quinn was finally able to stop Howell's vehicle on state Route 119 at the overpass of state Route 70 in New Stanton, but Howell leapt out of his vehicle and over a guardrail, fleeing on foot into a field near state Route 119 and state Route 70.

Trooper Keith Sobecki, who had assisted in the pursuit earlier, chased Howell and took him into custody.

Upon subduing Howell, police learned he had a mouthful of suspected crack cocaine, and he refused to spit it out of his mouth.

Police recovered some of the suspected crack cocaine along the roadway and from the back seat of the patrol vehicle where Howell was seated.

Due to the possibility he had swallowed some of the drug, Howell was taken by ambulance to Forbes Regional Hospital for treatment, police said.

Howell will face charges of fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, possession of a controlled substance, driving under the influence, recklessly endangering another person, hindering apprehension or prosecution, escape, disorderly conduct and public drunkenness, as well as a number of traffic citations. He will be arraigned following his release from the hospital.

Police reported that Howell had an active bench warrant in Fayette County.

Police ask that anyone who was traveling on state Route 119 at the time of the incident and was passed or almost hit by Howell's vehicle contact Cpl. Brian Mears at 724-439-7111.

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