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Four steal beer, run from police



Four Letcher County men involved in a high-speed chase Sunday were arrested at a public cemetery in Flat Gap.

Letcher County Sheriff ’s Deputy Crystal Davis tried to conduct a traffic stop on Feb. 21 at Mayking on the driver of a blue-green Buick with plastic covering over a rear window. An employee of Valero Gas Station located on the Kentucky/ Virginia line reported to police that someone riding in the vehicle stole two 30-packs of beer from the gas station.

Davis wrote in a uniform citation that the driver, Jake Lucas, 23, of 170 Bill Cornett Road, Whitesburg, failed to stop when she turned on the lights and sirens in her cruiser.

“I then pursued the vehicle onto KY 2035 where they turned around facing me and I could see (Lucas) operating the vehicle,” wrote Davis.

The passengers in the vehicle were Donald R. Lucas, 54, of Mayking, and Darrell Sandlin, 36, and Steve A. Sandlin, 32, both of 203 Raymonds Branch, Whitesburg.

Davis said the vehicle then headed back toward US 119 South, reaching speeds of 90 to 95 miles per hour.

She said the vehicle turned onto KY 932 when she lost sight of it and terminated the pursuit.

Later that day the sheriff ’s department received a tip that the occupants of the vehicle were at a public cemetery located on Kenny Phillips Road in Flat Gap.

Jake Lucas was walking through the woods when Sgt. Jason Bates and Deputy Mike Burton of the sheriff ’s department arrived at the cemetery.

“I gave verbal commands telling him to stop and identified myself,” wrote Bates in a citation. “(Jake Lucas) began to run down a hill and I started pursuing him on foot, telling him several more times to stop but continued to run.”

Bates deployed a Taser and then Jake Lucas was taken into custody.

Bates wrote in a citation that he could smell a strong odor of alcohol and said Jake Lucas appeared to be “manifestly under the influence.”

During the foot pursuit Burton’s pants valued at $60 were ripped on a barbwire fence and his shoes valued at $80 were torn.

Jake Lucas was charged with first-degree fleeing or evading police (motor vehicle), second-degree fleeing or evading police, third-degree criminal mischief and alcohol intoxication in a public place.

Donald Lucas, Darrell Sandlin, and Steve A. Sandlin, were each charged with alcohol intoxication in a public place.

Jake Lucas remains in the Letcher County Jail, where his bond is set at $10,000 cash.


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