South suburban man involved in weekend pursuit charged with multiple felonies

An Olympia Fields, Illinois man is facing several felony and misdemeanor counts after police said he led them on a pursuit that reached 115 mph early Sunday on Interstate 80/94 before he crashed into parked cars and then fell face-first on the concrete after police used a stun gun while apprehending him.

Indiana State Police Trooper Trace Haddon was patrolling the interstate around 3:53 a.m. Sunday, March 24, when he observed a silver Chevrolet SUV with heavy front-end damage, driving eastbound at an extremely high rate of speed, according to a release from Sgt. Glen Fifield, public information officer for ISP’s Lowell Post.

The SUV was paced at 115 mph when the interstate has a posted speed limit of 55 mph. Haddon initiated a traffic stop but the driver refused to stop, resulting in a pursuit.

The pursuit exited the interstate onto Grant Street where the vehicle crashed into three parked vehicles near the intersection of Lincoln and 36th Avenue in Gary. The driver then fled from the scene with troopers in pursuit on foot.

As the suspect was fleeing from police, he dropped two handguns which were recovered, according to the release. Police used a stun gun to gain control of the suspect when he was apprehended.

During that deployment, the suspect fell face-first onto the concrete. First aid was immediately rendered to the suspect until EMS arrived and transported him to Methodist Northlake in Gary for treatment.

The suspect was later transported to IU Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis for evaluation. After being treated and released, the suspect was then transported back to Northwest Indiana by troopers and incarcerated at the Lake County Jail.

During the investigation, troopers determined that passengers in the vehicle attempted to get the driver to stop but he refused. The occupants of the vehicle, one female adult and an 8-year-old child, remained in the vehicle following the crash and were not injured, according to the release.

Troopers also determined that the original damage to the SUV was a result of a hit-and-run crash that the driver was actively fleeing from that had also occurred on I-80/94 eastbound near Indianapolis Boulevard. The victim of that crash was attempting to contact police to report the crash when the SUV passed the trooper at a high rate of speed.

The suspect has been identified as Endris Thomas, 30. He is being held at the Lake County Jail without bond as there is a hold for him on charges in Cook County, Illinois for escape-failure to comply with electronic ankle monitoring.

The following charges have been approved by the Lake County Prosecutor’s Office: unlawful carrying of a handgun by prior convicted felon, Level 5 felony (2 counts); unlawful possession of a narcotic drug, Level 5 felony; resisting law enforcement with a vehicle, Level 6 felony; resisting law enforcement, Level 6 felony (3 counts); intimidation, Level 6 felony (2 counts); operating while intoxicated – endangering a person, Class A misdemeanor (2 counts); possession of marijuana, Class B misdemeanor; and operating while intoxicated, Class C misdemeanor.