An 18 year old from Washington D.C. fled from a traffic stop on Summerland Key Thursday night; he was finally stopped in Marathon when deputies used Stinger Spikes to puncture the tires on his vehicle.
Just before 10 p.m. Sheriff’s dispatchers received information a blue Ford Mustang was driving recklessly at a high rate of speed northbound from the 17 mile marker of the Highway. Deputy John Gabay spotted the car as it passed the 25 mile marker at 73 miles per hour in a 45 mile per hour zone.
Deputy Gabay pulled the car over and asked to see the driver’s license, registration and insurance. He could see two people in the vehicle. The driver, later identified as Leonidas Williams, could not produce any of the information the deputy asked him for. He asked the deputy if he could look up his driver’s license information using a date of birth and social security number.
Deputy Gabay ran the vehicle’s registration and the date of birth and social security number the driver gave him. All the information returned as belonging to a white male from Massachusetts with the first name of “Jack”. When Deputy Gabay asked the driver if he was “Jack” the driver said yes. The driver was a young black male.
When Deputy Gabay confronted Williams with the fact that he knew he was lying about his identity, Williams took off, speeding northbound. Deputy Gabay called out the vehicle description over his police radio asking deputies to be on the lookout for it.
Deputy Gabay and Sgt. Evan Calhoun continued northbound looking for the vehicle. They spotted it several times, first northbound, then it did a U-turn and went south, then northbound again.
Marathon deputies got a set of Stinger Spikes ready to stop the vehicle. As the vehicle approached the north end of the Seven Mile Bridge, they deployed the spikes which punctured the car’s tires. It came to a rest up against a fence on Knight’s Key. Williams fled on foot from the car, but he was found after three hours of searching when he finally gave himself up to deputies at 1:30 a.m.
Subsequent investigation revealed the passenger, who told deputies he was in fear for his life, demanded to be let out of the car on Big Pine Key. He was located on Big Pine Key and said he’d only known the driver for about a week and that they met in Miami. He was not arrested.
Williams was arrested. A check on his name revealed he has no license and has outstanding warrants in Maryland. He was charged with giving a false name to a law enforcement officer, driving without a license, two counts of fleeing and eluding police, two counts of reckless driving as well as multiple traffic infractions including passing in a no passing zone, speeding, and resisting arrest.