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Man fired at deputy during multi-county chase, authorities say

Authorities said the driver reached speeds of over 100 mph as he drove into Catawba County, eventually firing three shots at the pursuing deputy.
Published: Sep. 28, 2021 at 1:55 PM EDT
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BURKE COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) – A man is facing a number of charges after authorities said he fired on them during a chase that went through multiple counties.

According to the Burke County Sheriff’s Office, a deputy saw a truck pulling a trailer near Hildebran Avenue at 9:46 p.m. Monday. The vehicle matched the description of a truck pulling a stolen trailer, authorities said.

The deputy tried to pull the vehicle over, but the driver, identified as 51-year-old Michael Darren Mehaffey, refused to stop and a chase began, according to the BCSO.

Authorities said the driver reached speeds of over 100 mph as he drove into Catawba County, eventually firing three shots at the pursuing deputy.

The chase continued into Cleveland County and back to the Catawba County and Lincoln County lines, according to law enforcement. Mehaffey allegedly fired another round at the Burke County deputy before crashing his vehicle on Highway 10 West in Catawba County and running behind some homes, authorities said.

Deputies with Catawba and Cleveland counties, as well as the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, assisted with the search for the suspect. Authorities said he was found in some brush with a .38-caliber revolver as well as narcotics, and taken into custody at approximately 10:51 p.m.

Mehaffey had 12 unserved pending charges and was charged with these new counts as a result of the chase, according to the BCSO:

  • Felony flee to elude
  • Reckless driving
  • Assault with a deadly weapon on a government official
  • Possession of a firearm by a felon
  • Felony larceny of property
  • Possession of stolen property

Mehaffey was taken for medical attention after saying he was injured while running on foot, a press release stated. No injuries were reported for law enforcement officers.

The suspect’s bond was set at $290,000 and he is scheduled for a Sept. 29 court date, authorities said.

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