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Valley News Dispatch

Tarentum man faces drug, gun charges in connection with police chase

Madasyn Czebiniak
| Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019, 6:45 p.m.

A Tarentum man is accused of leading police on a chase through Arnold and New Kensington last year before crashing his SUV into another vehicle and injuring three people.

Jaquay Karohn Primus, 22, was arraigned Tuesday on felony charges of aggravated assault, drug possession, receiving stolen property and illegally possessing a gun, along with a host of driving offenses. He was taken to Westmoreland County Prison after failing to post $100,000 bond.

Police said they received a report around 2:30 p.m. Nov. 30 that Primus had been harassing an employee at Little Blessings Child Care on Arnold’s Drey Street.

The employee told police that Primus had threatened her and fired a gun at her the night before.

As Arnold police Officer Joe Nixon spoke with the woman and another Little Blessings employee, Primus was spotted in a white SUV at Victoria and Drey streets, police said. Nixon got into his patrol car and tried to pull over the SUV, but it sped off.

During the pursuit, police said the SUV driven by Primus struck a stop sign and mailbox before running through a stop sign at Leishman Avenue and Richmond Street, where Nixon said he ended the pursuit because he was close to two schools, and it was near dismissal time.

Primus continued along Leishman and ran through two more stop signs before crashing into a vehicle carrying three people at Leishman and North Street, police said. Police described the three people’s injuries as serious.

Police said Primus did not stop after the wreck but continued on Leishman until crashing into a parked vehicle and driving onto a sidewalk, where the SUV struck a drainage pipe.

Primus got out of the SUV and ran, police said. A New Kensington police officer arrested Primus a short time later along Constitution Boulevard.

Nixon said he found a loaded 9 mm clip and a cellphone in the SUV that Primus had been driving. Westmoreland County detectives used security footage to track the path Primus used after he ran from the wrecked SUV and found a 9 mm semiautomatic pistol without a clip and baggies containing suspected heroin and cocaine in a yard on Leishman Avenue, according to a criminal complaint.

The gun had been reported stolen to West Deer police in April, police said.

Police said Primus is barred from possessing firearms because he was found guilty of a felony drug charge as a delinquent in February 2014. He also was wanted on unspecified warrants, according to the criminal complaint.

Primus is scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing before New Kensington District Judge Frank J. Pallone Jr. on Jan. 17.

Madasyn Czebiniak is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Madasyn at 724-226-4702, mczebiniak@tribweb.com or via Twitter @maddyczebstrib.

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